AKP members still cautious over formula to release MPs in prison
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
Justice Minister Sadullah Ergin had a two-hour meeting with PM Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Deputy PM Bekir Bozdağ. AA photoThe ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) remains skeptical of the formula, which would bring about the release of eight arrested deputies, agreed on by three oppositional parties on the grounds that it would violate the constitution’s principle of equality. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan held a lengthy meeting with Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdağ and Justice Minister Sadullah Ergin yesterday, a day before the Cabinet is set to convene.
As a result of Parliament Speaker Cemil Çiçek’s initiative, the Republican People’s Party (CHP), the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) and the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) have agreed to amend Article 100 of the Criminal Procedures Law, under which lawmakers would be included in the scope of exemptions from pre-trial detention.
The legislation of the amendment requires the support of the AKP as the sum of lawmakers in the three opposition parties does not suffice to pass the bill. Erdoğan earlier said they would evaluate the proposal but would not allow the opposition to accuse the government as being responsible for this crisis. His meetings with Ergin and Bozdağ, both legal experts, were important in this sense.
However some voices within the AKP believe the amendment would violate the constitution’s principle of equality. “There are so many people arrested without conviction. The high court could annul it,” is the view expressed by some AKP officials. For them, the best solution to the problem of jailed lawmakers is to release them through court decisions.