Charter panel to go at ‘mother tongue’ issue

Charter panel to go at ‘mother tongue’ issue

ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
Charter panel to go at ‘mother tongue’ issue

If we do not solve our problems, then we will like our neighbors, says Akat.

While the issue of “mother tongues” has locked several articles at the Parliamentary Constitution Conciliation Commission, a “mother tongue special session” formula has been created to overcome the deadlock. 

The commission will hold a special session in the coming days to debate the articles related to the use of language. In the writing of the new constitution, the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) demanded the use of the mother tongue in several articles, and many articles were not able to be written because of this reason. 

The commission, in order to overcome the deadlock, has decided to discuss several items such as “education in mother tongue,” “the right to worship in mother tongue,” and “the use of language in public” in a special session. Within the framework of principles determined in this session, it is hoped that any future deadlock in other articles concerning mother tongues will be prevented.

While “the right to defense” was being discussed at the commission, Altan Tan from the BDP demanded “the right to defense in Kurdish” saying: “There should be a ‘preferred language’ phrase for defense in courts. As the BDP, we cannot give up on that.” 

Ayla Akat Ata from the BDP said: “We have to solve our problems. We can see what the neighboring countries around us have become. If we do not solve our problems, then we will be in the same situation as our neighbors.” 

However, Oktay Öztürk from Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) objected to these words, shouting: “We are totally against this. We cannot agree. This would mean creating a new nationality. We have taken an oath on our constitution. Get your rights if you can.” 

After the heated exchanges, the commission decided that a special session on the “use of mother tongue” should be held in the coming days.