BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific Russian Polish Albanian Greek Czech Ukrainian Serbian Turkish Romanian
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: Europe  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS
Sunday, 4 August, 2002, 11:50 GMT 12:50 UK
Turkish reforms face legal challenge
Devlet Bahceli and Bulent Ecevit
Prime Minister Ecevit (r): Under pressure from Bahceli

A package of reforms passed by the Turkish parliament is to be challenged by Devlet Bahceli, the leader of the largest group, the Nationalist Action Party.

Mr Bahceli told Turkish state television that he had asked colleagues to prepare an appeal to the country's constitutional court.

The reforms, which included the abolition of the death penalty, were passed in an effort to meet EU conditions for membership negotiations.

Abdullah Ocalan
Devlet Bahceli wanted Ocalan executed
The Nationalist Action Party has argued long and hard against the adoption of what has become known as "the EU reforms".

For Mr Bahceli, the abolition of the death penalty was, in effect an amnesty for the captured Kurdish paramilitary leader Abdullah Ocalan.

He considers the lifting of restrictions on the use of the Kurdish language in education and broadcasting as a threat to the unity of the Turkish state.

Turkey fought for 15 years against Kurds who demanded greater autonomy.

More than 35,000 people were killed.

Mr Bahceli told Turkish state television that the aims of the Kurdish paramilitary group, the PKK, and those of the EU were connected.

Hardline supporters

He at one time enjoyed significant support for his hardline views.

In the 1999 election, he campaigned on a platform of executing Abdullah Ocalan.

Since then, he has often criticised what he has called "EU interference in Turkey's affairs".

It is not clear how serious the threat of the constitutional court might be for the passage of the reforms, but it is an indication that Mr Bahceli and his party will seek to take the campaign against the reforms into the forthcoming election.


Key stories

Background

Profiles

TALKING POINT
See also:

03 Aug 02 | Europe
03 Aug 02 | Europe
02 Aug 02 | Europe
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Europe stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Europe stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes