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Minister GÜL: The judiciary is the judiciary of everyone and decides on behalf of the nation

Minister of Justice Abdulhamit Gül stated that the Turkish judiciary is wanted to be defamed with insulting criticisms and said, "It is never acceptable to inculpate the judiciary over some troubled examples and use insulting expressions. The judiciary is the judiciary of everyone and it decides on behalf of the nation. "

Abdulhamit Gül made important evaluations on the agenda in the live broadcast he participated in NTV. Referring to the unjust criticisms towards the judiciary, Gül continued his speech as follows:

"To categorize the judges in Turkey or to say 'their judiciary, others' judiciary' is a severe insult to the Turkish judiciary. This does not suit the main opposition party. If it is doing this consciously, it uses very indecent insulting expressions that will offend our judiciary, our judges and prosecutors. We strongly condemn these explanations. Turkish judiciary is a judicial body that has been fighting against the coup attempt since 15 July and has been carrying out judicial proceedings within the framework of the democracy,  law and the constitution. About 6-7 million files come before the court in Turkey. Can there be mistakes in three to five files? Yes, there can be. Members of the judiciary can also make mistakes, but there is the possibility to appeal to a higher court concerning the decision given by a court. There is an inspection facility for those who make mistakes, those who are dismissed are not exclusively dismissed due to FETÖ... It is never acceptable to inculpate the judiciary over some troubled examples and use insulting expressions. The judiciary is the judiciary of everyone and it decides on behalf of the nation. "


Emphasizing that Turkey is capable of providing its border security, Gül stated that no threat in this regard can ever be accepted. Minister Gül continued "This statement is an important declaration in general, but it is important to see that, ' there is no such army in any way, but it will be made by the civils, citizens there', that is to say, Turkey can never stay silent to any formation that will threaten its borders and security without giving a name to it. Here, thousands of weapons, equipment sent by the US to the region in TIRs shall be returned to the USA, shall be collected. Otherwise, Turkey, of course, will make its  own self-defense against such formation and preparations that threat its own security. "


Also evaluating the issue of the alliance, Minister Gül said "What is the ultimate goal of all these efforts? To provide the national consensus. That is to say, we will collect all national and domestic participants, the national consensus and continue to work so as to be a social center. What kind of legal arrangements are necessary,  what other arrangements are required, we will negotiate and evaluate all of them with MHP."

Gül said that it is an accurate expectation for the parties to participate in the elections with their own institutional identities and emblems in terms of their electorate, as well. Gül added that a formula to enable democratic participation in the strongest way and more strengthen the democracy will be negotiated and publicly shared.

When asked how will the alliance will affect Kurdish electors together with the comments stating that those who are not in the alliance are "non-national",  Minister Gül stated that the AK Party is the party that received the most of the votes of Kurdish electors. Minister Gül continued:

"The AK Party is the party that receives the most of the votes of Kurds. It is also the largest Kurdish Party at the same time. It is the party having votes from every place and section of  Turkey. In our foundation, we have an understanding of democracy, common history, common sense of future and an understanding of seeing 80 million equal first class citizens. This is the center of our political style. Therefore, by saying 'national, consensus' here, we are talking about reconciliation and unity. The intention of saying 'national'  is a call for everyone living in this country saying the country and unity is a priority. For this reason, it is a consensus towards all section of the society that has this feeling. It not something related to a region or an ethnic power. It is not for a section. It is the call and consensus ground for all. The AK Party has already shown it with its practices, theories and loyalty since its foundation. By expanding this consensus and by providing social and national consensus, we will continue our call. We will provide a strong national consensus that will also be supported by the party grassroots. "


Upon being reminded the discussions on the local court's decision of "no discharge" against the Constitutional Court's decision of violation against the detained journalists, Minister Gül stated that there is no hierarchy in judiciary, in the courts. Emphasizing that every court received its power from the constitution and the laws, Gül reminded that the individual application is brought by the AK Party government. Stating that the Constitutional Court is responsible to decide whether or not there is a violation of fundamental rights and freedoms, Gül noted the following evaluations:

"But the local court is the first-instance court to decide ultimately on the file after the Constitutional Court, to where the file goes, makes its decision. The case is still going on, it will further go to the appeal, to the Court of Cassation. The ultimate decision-making authority by evaluating the evidence of all these proceedings is, of course, the first-instance court.

First instance court rendered its decision by either stating that it 'gave a decision after having examined the evidence at the file or has not seen the grounds yet'. All judicial decisions of course can be discussed within the framework of the law, but it is not right to carry the debate outside the scope of law and harm the courts and institutions. The debates will be and are evaluated within the framework of the law and accordingly, the first instance court rendered a decision by adopting an approach according to its evidence. This is how Turkish legal system works. In this system, challenges can be lodged, evaluated and a case-law can be formed. Thus I can say that a case-law is being established."

Minister Gül continued his remarks as follows:

"Be it the Constitutional Court, first instance courts or higher courts, the courts can be criticized in accordance with the decisions they made. However, this does not mean disregarding, not recognising the court or ignoring the authority or that individual application. In this sense, the Constitutional Court cannot issue a final judgment, nor act as if it owns the case file, nor it can decide acquittal or conviction. Because the competent authority to try the case lies within the first instance court, and the case continues in that court. The boundaries must, by no means, be transgressed. The Constitutional Court is entitled to examine whether there is a violation of fundamental rights and freedoms. However, disobeying or 'not recognising' the decisions of Constitutional Court is out of question. The first instance court will examine the case in terms of evidence, testimonies and the right of the defence to examine witnesses, according to its opinion. Therefore, such boundaries are determined by laws and Constitution, trials take place according to such boundaries."


When Minister Gül was asked to evaluate the admission of lieutenant Burak Akın being a FETO member who is a protection officer of Commander of Land Forces General Yaşar Güler and whether this is a new tactic, he said:

"We should always act diligently in the face of such things. This organization is an insidious organization that is different from typical terrorist organizations. They are accustomed to deceive people, they adopt deception as religion, this shows to what extent they are perverted. Those who 'admit' their acts may be arrested or released. That is something we learn from the public, too. The relevant judicial bodies render the decisions thereof. The Turkish Criminal Code has provisions on admission. If such elements exist, it falls upon the discretionary power of the court. Not all 'admitters' are released." 

Minister Gül also spoke about eliminating the victimizations: "Turkish judiciary and Republic of Turkey put in a great effort to stop the victimization of citizens caused by FETO. Justice in fact means giving someone what s/he deserves. The guilty will be penalized and the non-guilty will live what his/her guiltlessness requires."

Minister Gül underlined that FETO uses information technology intensively and gave the following information: "They planted a trap within the ByLock system. A program is downloaded which resulted in sending some numbers to the ByLock centre. 11.480 people have been identified through this process. The important thing is stop the victimization of the people by the state who were victimized by FETO. The General Chairman of the CHP (Republican People's Party) says 'You arrested 11.000 people'. This is not true. 1287 people were arrested out of the list of 11.000 people. ByLock is a strong evidence. One cannot possibly assume that 'Those who do not have ByLock are not terrorist members'. The judicial authorities will decide it."

Gül indicated that some people were victimized because of FETO's traps and 1823 people were reinstated in their jobs by Decree Law.


Gül also mentioned the judicial reform package, "We are working on very important subjects to establish trust in the judiciary and accelerate the judicial process. Some regulations are prepared concerning certain offences and to improve the deterrent nature of rehabilitative justice in the face of crimes. We work on augmenting remedies through peace courts, alternative resolution ways, instead of overloading the courts with civil cases. Our works in that area have developed so much that we are now capable of sharing our opinion with relevant institutions. Evidently, such reforms cannot be put into practice over night. We will complete this process by considering the Court of Cassation's practices and our universities' opinions."

Minister Gül reiterated that the mediation that concerns the relation between the worker and employer will be implemented as of 1 January and said "724 files out of 844 that were submitted for mediation resulted in compromise. 80% have resulted in compromise, 20% applied  to the court". When Minister Gül was reminded of the public demand to cancel the good conduct abatement in the case of offences committed against children and women, he added "It is not right to interpret such cases against the victim or by crossing the boundaries. I, as a member of judiciary, want to express that legal boundaries must not be exceeded or interpreted too loosely in the case of sexual crimes and violence against women. We examine how such cases are handled in France and Germany and compare it with the implementations of the Court of Cassation." 




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