Turkish top court accepts AK Party closure case

Turkish constitutional court says to take up case on closure of ruling AK Party, excluding President Abdullah gül.

Turkish top court accepts AK Party closure case
Osman Paksut, deputy chairman of the Turkish Constitutional Court, said Monday the court has decided to examine an indictment prepared by the prosecutor of the Supreme Court of Appeals, on closure of ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party.

The indictment was accepted unanimously except the part concerning (President) Abdullah Gul.

The part on President Abdullah Gul was accepted by a majority of votes (7-4). Judges Hasim Kilic, Sacit Adali, Serdar Ozguldur and Serruh Kaleli voted against .

Paksut refused to answer questions of the journalists.

PROCESS

Governmental AK Party will now prepare its preliminary defence and will submit it to the Supreme Court of Appeals Chief Prosecutor's Office.

After the Chief Prosecutor states his views on the merits of the case, AK Party will make a verbal defense in a month's time.

This will be followed by verbal statements of the Chief Prosecutor. Later the rapporteur assigned by the Constitutional Court will prepare his/her report on the merits of the case.

In this phase, the Chief Prosecutor can submit further evidence and AK Party can submit additional defence material to the rapporteur. After completion, the rapporteur's report will be distributed to court members.

Later Constitutional Court Chief Judge Hasim Kilic will set a date and the court will start hearing the case.

If AK Party demands extra time for its defence, the court will also assess this demand.

According to the Constitution, at least 7 of the 11 members of the court have to vote for dissolution in order for the court to shut down a political party.

In line with Article 69 of the Constitution, the court may instead decide to reduce or cut the financial aid given to AK Party from the Treasury.

The AK Party, which won 47 percent of the vote in last year's elections, says the case is politically motivated.

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Last Mod: 31 Mart 2008, 16:40
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