Top appeals judge urges wider consensus charter

Top appeals judge urges wider consensus charter

ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
Top appeals judge urges wider consensus charter

‘If the Constitution will be made [through a one- or two-party consensus], its legitimacy will immediately be questionable,’ Judge Ali Alkan says. AA photo

Supreme Court of Justice head Ali Alkan urged political parties that a Constitution written through the consensus of only two parties would cause fresh debate over its legitimacy, in an obvious reference to the ruling party’s plan to ally with the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) for the new Constitution.

“As far as we learn from public opinion, it [the new Constitution] will be made through a one- or two-party consensus. Personally, if the Constitution will be made this way, its legitimacy will immediately be questionable, as it fails to represent societal consensus,” Alkan told reporters May 3.

The judge recalled that societal consensus was a must for the charter and the need for a new charter was generally accepted in society.

Alkan’s warning came only an hour before Parliament’s Constitutional Conciliation Committee was set to meet in a “make or break meeting.” An end to the committee’s mandate would let the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) introduce its own draft with the support of the BDP. Not only Alkan but almost all the heads of the supreme judiciary have warned about the legitimacy about the new charter.

Political dynamism

Alkan said political dynamism was sufficient and eligible enough to solve this problem.

When asked about possible red lines on the new charter, Alkan said: “It should surely embrace international conventions, universal principles of law and it should be libertarian. Our red lines should be international conventions and the principles of the European Court of Human Rights.”

On a question about the resolution process of the terror problem, Alkan said this process had to be concluded successfully. “The parties should reach a point through sacrifice,” he said.