Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE DEBATE

France's Weinsteins: Watershed moment in fight against sexual abuse?

Read more

FOCUS

A shield and a target: France's anti-terrorism operation 'Sentinelle'

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

#MeToo and #BalanceTonPorc expose extent of sexual harassment

Read more

ENCORE!

Musical maestro Philippe Jordan on bringing passion to the Paris Opera

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Black day for democracy': Malta in mourning after top journalist is murdered

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Has the Weinstein scandal 'freed' women from their silence?

Read more

THE DEBATE

Europe’s newest face: Kurz’s election win indicates rightward shift for Austria

Read more

FOCUS

Turkey's brain drain: Turning their backs on limited freedom, declining economy

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

Internet giants: Too big to be taxed?

Read more

Europe

Top Turkish court rejects opposition's referendum challenge

© AFP archive

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2017-04-25

A top Turkish court on Tuesday rejected an opposition legal challenge to an April 16 referendum that gave President Recep Tayyip Erdogan greater powers. Opposition activists had filed a complaint over last-minute changes to voting rules.

The opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) has repeatedly criticised a ruling by the country's top election authority, the Supreme Election Board, to accept ballots in envelopes without an official stamp, arguing that the decision left the vote open to fraud.

The party launched a bid to annul the referendum last week, formally lodging a petition on Friday with the Council of State, Turkey's highest administrative court, after the "Yes" side won 51.4 percent of the vote.

The court rejected its challenge by majority vote, saying it could not rule on the election board's move because it was "not an administrative procedure", state-run news agency Anadolu reported. Turkish Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag said Saturday that decisions made by the election authority could neither be challenged in the Constitutional Court nor the Council of State.

Levent Gok, CHP's parliamentary group leader, immediately hit back, accusing Bozdag of giving "instructions" to the judges before they had made a decision.

Turkey will implement an executive presidency from November 2019, axing the role of prime minister and empowering the president to appoint ministers.

International monitors, including from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, have also noted irregularities in the vote that gave Erdogan a narrow win.

Lawmakers at the Council of Europe's Parliamentary Assembly voted to put Turkey on a monitoring watchlist on Tuesday, citing concerns over what they say is the stifling of dissent and rights violations under Erdogan as he concentrates his power.

The vote to open the formal procedure against Ankara passed with 113 votes in favour versus 45 against. The Council of Europe is a human rights body of which Turkey is a member.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP and REUTERS)

Date created : 2017-04-25

  • TURKEY

    Opposition to challenge referendum at Turkey's highest court

    Read more

  • TURKEY

    Turkey referendum 'below international standards', says European observer mission

    Read more

  • TURKEY

    Erdogan hails ‘historic’ referendum victory, opposition cries foul

    Read more

COMMENT(S)