Turkey: State of emergency means no restrictions on freedoms

Turkey's Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus says there will be no rolling back on democracy and limiting basic rights and freedoms during the state of emergency.

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Tourists walk along Istiklal Street in Taksim, a major shopping and tourist district, in central Istanbul, Turkey.

There will be no rolling back on democracy and limiting basic rights and freedoms in the state of emergency, Turkey's Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus said on Friday.

Speaking to a group of media associations in the capital Ankara, Kurtulmus said the "state of emergency is not for the nation, but for the state."

"It is a decision taken against Fethullah Terrorist Organisation (FETO) which is embedded in the country’s institutions," he said.

"It is just to make our work faster and more effective."

Kurtulmus denied claims that human rights have been suspended by the state of emergency and said it may last less than three months.

"It is the nation who will win this fight against all terrorist organisations such as FETO, PKK and Daesh."

Turkey’s declaration of a three-month state of emergency following a deadly coup attempt on July 15 has raised questions over what is to come in the possible three months ahead.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had previously said, "The purpose of the state of emergency is to most effectively and swiftly take steps necessary to eliminate the threat to democracy in our country, the rule of law, and the rights and freedom of our citizens."

According to the Turkish Constitution, the state of emergency can be declared for a maximum period of six months when serious indications of widespread violence, aimed at removing the free democracy environment or the basic rights and freedoms established by the Constitution, appear; or when the public order is distorted severely due to acts of violence.

Screenshot shows Article 119 and 120 of the Turkish constitution adopted in 1982.

The July 15 coup attempt martyred at least 246 and wounded more than 2,100 people, who took to the streets to protest the attempt. 

Turkey accuses US-based preacher Fetullah Gulen and his so-called parallel state of being behind the failed coup and has called for his extradition to Turkey to face trial.

The government also speeded up the crack down against the Gulen-linked organisations, companies, schools and officials. 

Bank Asya's banking license cancelled

Turkish regulators on Friday also cancelled Islamic lender Bank Asya's banking license, the bank said in a statement to the Public Disclosure Platform.

The Turkey’s Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency's decision (BDDK) came after the Turkish Deposit Insurance Fund (TMSF) on Monday temporarily suspended Bank Asya's banking operations.

The sale of the bank did not attract any bids on July 15, according to the Fund.

The tender was for the sale of a minimum 183.6 million ‘A’ group shares, amounting to 51 percent of the bank.

Bank Asya is a participation bank affiliated with Gulen.