Turkey’s Gul approves law despite military’s objections

ANKARA, Turkey

President Abdullah Gul approved a controversial new measure Wednesday (July 8th) that allows civilian courts to prosecute military officers for some crimes. Gul, however, demanded that some regulations be implemented that would “dispel worries” among the military.

The army has opposed the measure, claiming it violates Article 145 of the constitution, regarding military justice. Gul noted on Wednesday that the new law complies with EU requirements and was passed as part of Turkey’s efforts to join the bloc.

It allows civilian courts to sue military officers in peace time for attempts to topple the government, threaten national security, participate in organised crime or violate the constitution. It also transfers to civilian courts the power to try civilians in peace time for offences that currently fall under the military penal code.

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