Turkish Parliament dismisses summary of proceedings against justice minister
Justice Minister Bekir Bozdağ had acknowledged that the legal procedures were underway during a speech at the Parliament last week. DHA photoA summary of proceedings filed by the an İzmir public prosecutor against Justice Minister Bekir Bozdağ was dismissed by Parliament on Jan. 29, on the grounds that it was not in line with ordinary procedures.
The legal procedure had been launched to denounce an intervention into investigations by the executive, after Bozdağ acknowledged that the ministry’s undersecretary had called a chief prosecutor conducting a probe into fraud claims at İzmir Harbor.
Parliament’s statement said that summaries must first be sent to the Prime Minister’s Office and then to Parliament.
It also added that the İzmir Prosecutor’s Office should not have sent 32 folders regarding the graft probes along with the one-page minute on Bozdağ. “Only the documents regarding the related minister should be sent, otherwise there is risk of a breach of confidentiality from the point of view of the suspects named in the files,” the statement said.
A second summary of proceedings filed by prosecutors in Adana regarding the search of a truck allegedly carrying weapons and ammunition to Syria on Jan. 1 is also underway.
Such incidents of tension between judges and prosecutors and the Justice Ministry come as ties between the government and the movement of the Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen are more strained than ever, in the wake of the corruption probe launched in December. In response to the damaging graft scandal, the government has responded with massive purges at the Police Department and a move to increase its control over the judiciary.
Bozdağ, a former deputy prime minister, was appointed to his current post on Dec. 25 as part of a large Cabinet reshuffle announced by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan after news of the probes first broke.