Turkish parliament approves key changes in electoral regulations during nightlong session

Hurriyet Daily News
Fecha de publicación: 
13 Mar 2018

A substantial law that gives the green light to political parties to form pre-election alliances and overhauls electoral regulations on the eve of 2019 polls has been approved at parliament after a marathon nightlong session, which included a physical fight between ruling and opposition lawmakers.

The 26-article law was approved by a majority vote led by the Justice and Development Party (AKP) and Nationalist Movement Party (MHP). The two parties have already announced an agreement to form what they have dubbed the “People’s Alliance.”

The law also brings about important amendments to the election law. The opposition argues these changes will raise questions over poll safety.

The AKP and MHP agreed on late March 12 to let the General Assembly work until the whole package is approved despite strong reactions from the Republican People’s Party (CHP) and the People’s Democratic Party (HDP).

CHP Deputy Parliamentary Group Chair Özgür Özel told reporters at a press conference at 2.20 a.m. that “they were witnessing a shameful moment in the history of democracy.” Recalling an earlier agreement in Parliament that suggested allowing a detailed discussion on the draft law during the week, Özel stressed that the AKP-MHP had broken the agreement, calling the two parties “political pickpockets.”

Hurriyet Daily News