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Turkey’s president approves law tightening grip on judiciary

Gul said he had studied the judiciary bill during its passage through parliament

Published: Updated:

Turkish President Abdullah Gul approved a law boosting government control over the appointment of judges and prosecutors on Wednesday, deferring to the Constitutional Court on some elements in the legislation.

The law, along with a regulation tightening control of the internet already approved by Gul, is seen by Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's critics as an authoritarian response to a corruption inquiry shaking his government.

Erdogan accused his enemies on Tuesday of hacking encrypted state communications to fake a phone conversation suggesting he warned his son to hide large sums of money before police raids as part of the inquiry.

Gul said he had studied the judiciary bill during its passage through parliament and warned the justice minister about 15 points which he regarded as anti-constitutional. He said these elements had been addressed in revisions to the draft.

"After the correction of these clear violations, I found it more appropriate for the law to be published and for the Constitutional Court to assess the other articles of the law which are subject to pro and con arguments," he said in a statement issued by his office.

The judiciary bill will give the government more say in the naming of judges and prosecutors. The main opposition CHP parties expected to file a challenge to the law at the Constitutional Court, seeking its annulment.