Turkish parliament adopts law on prevention of financing of proliferation of WMDs
The parliament adopted a law early Dec. 27, banning commercial activities of organizations and individuals facing sanctions by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). Accordingly, collecting or providing funds to such individuals and organizations also stands banned in Turkey.
The legislative body has also ratified a motion calling for the prevention of the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD).
Some additional provisions of the law also regulate both domestic and foreign foundations operating in Turkey. The operations of foreign foundations working in Turkey will be inspected regularly by Turkish Interior Ministry. The collection and distribution of funds abroad by the Turkey-based foundations in the form of aid and donations will be also regulated by the ministry.
The additional provisions of the draft law had given authority to the Interior Ministry of suspending the activities of associations temporarily, which was objected to by the opposition parties who argued that the government aimed to arbitrarily suspend the activities of the non-governmental organizations.
The relevant provision was retouched at the parliament talks, and the adopted law envisages that this authority would be used not for investigation but for prosecution, that is, during the judicial process.
The minister’s authority to suspend the activities of the association temporarily in cases where there is a problem with the delay was preserved. However, in this case, the rule of bringing the decision to the judiciary has been stipulated.
Provision against ‘terror funding’
The provisions of the new law also deal with terror funding. The definition of “asset” was revised to match the internationally recognized definition. Those who commit the crime of “funding terrorism” will be subjected to heavier fines and penalties, according to the new law. Also, the assets of individuals and organizations sanctioned by the UNSC for “funding terrorism” will be frozen in a swifter procedure.
The law has also regulated the collection of donations and funding through the internet. As such, collecting donations and funding online will be subject to permission from the Interior Ministry.