Justice Minister Bekir Bozdağ has ruled out any possible change to the Constitution's first four articles, which state the essential tenets of the Turkish Republic, following a recent controversial remark by the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). "Even though the CHP argue that the Constitution's first four articles will be changed, our constitutional amendment package has not proposed anything related to these articles, even indirectly," Bozdağ said at Anadolu Agency's Editors' Desk in Ankara on Wednesday. "The CHP is lying while looking into the eyes of the nation," he added.
The current (1982) Constitution's first three articles regulate the basic principles of the country, namely: that the country is a republic; that it is a democratic, secular and social state governed by the rule of law; that its language is Turkish and capital is Ankara and that the first three articles cannot be altered. The 18 articles in the constitutional amendment proposal, which was jointly submitted to Parliament by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) and opposition Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) has not proposed any changes related to the basic principles of the country.
Commenting on the second round of voting on the constitutional reform package in Parliament, Bozdağ predicted that the package will pass. "In my opinion, the second round of the vote in Parliament will be passed with between 340 and 347 votes. I don't expect any negativity in this round," Bozdağ said.
A presidential system will establish a strong government in Turkey as it brings political stability by its very nature, according to Bozdağ. He said a presidential system would improve on the so-called "two-headed system," which has caused political instability in the recent past, and bring a strong governmental system to the country. Minister Bozdağ noted that the proposed constitutional changes are expected to bring the Turkish nation political stability and a powerful governing system in the long run.
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