The new Turkey
The OHAL Commission

03-Feb-2020

Complaint Mechanism Against Measures of the State of Emergency11

Complaint Mechanism Against Measures of the State of Emergency11

Following the proposal made by the Secretary General of the Council of Europe as well as the Venice Commission concerning the creation of an independent ad hoc body for the examination of individual cases of dismissals, subject to subsequent judicial review, the Government issued a Decree Law No: 685 concerning the establishment of a Inquiry Commission on 23 January 2017.
The Structure of the Commission

According to the Article 1(2) of the decree law no.685, "The commission consists of 7 members, three of whom are public officials appointed by the Prime Minister, one member appointed by the Minister of Justice from among judges and prosecutors serving in administrative units of the Ministry and also related and connected units of the Ministry, one appointed by the Minister of Interior from among the heads of civilian administration, two appointed by the HCJP from among the rapporteur judges serving in the Court of Cassation and the Council of State."

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The Commission will consist of seven members and will decide by majority vote. Abstentions are prohibited.

Duration of the Commission
The mission of the Commission is two years and it is possible to extend it for one year every time. Members will be elected for two years. If its term of office is extended, the same members can be reassigned or new members can be elected.

Termination of the duty of the Commission Members:
According to the Article 4: " In case of administrative investigation on grounds of membership, affiliation with, connection or link with a terrorist organization, any formation, structure, group which determined by the National Security Council to perform activities against national security, the membership of the members shall be terminated by the commission".

Secretariat Services:
According to the Article 12 "the secretarat services will be providedby the Prime Ministry's office. For this purpose, sufficient number of personnel will be allocated to the commission".

Working Procedures

According to Article 13 of the emergency decree law: "The principles and procedures as to the applications and working of the commission shall be determined by the Prime Ministry and declared upon a proposal of the commission".

According to Article 9, further, "the commission shall examine the applications over the files in line with the evidence submitted in the application".

Decisions (Article 10)

The Commission will decide by majority vote. Abstentions are prohibited.
According to the article 9 of the decree law theCommission shall either reject or accept the application as a result of its examination. The provisions of the acceptance decision are listed in Article 10 as the following:
"Article 10-(1) In case of the acceptance of the applications, filed by the dismissed public officials, the decison shall be informed to the State Personnel Presidency. The appointment proposals of these officials shall be made by the State Personnel Presidency to the staff and positions in line with their former status and titles in institutions other than those they were employed before, excepting those officials for whom this is not possible. (…)
(2) In case of acceptance of the application, filed by the closed institutions, the provisions of the concerned decree law shall be cancelled."

Appeal against Commission's Decisions (Article 11)
Members of the judiciary dismissed from the profession by HCJP and high courts on the basis of Decree Law No. 667 are granted the right to file a lawsuit at the Council of State within 60 days from the finalization of the decision, and from the date of publication of the Decree Law No. 685 in the case of decisions finalized previously. The provisions of this decree-law may also apply in respect of those who have already filed a lawsuit previously and even those for whom a decision has already been taken.

On the other hand, those who would like to appeal against the decisions of the Commission will be able to file cancellation proceedings at Ankara administrative courts to be designated by the High Council of Judges and Prosecutors.

Source: FACT SHEET STATE OF EMERGENCY MEASURES IN TURKEY


2 February 2020:

OHAL commission had rejected 88,700 out of 126,300 applications by end of 2019

A commission set up by the Turkish government to look into complaints from individuals who were adversely affected by government decrees during a state of emergency (OHAL) in Turkey had as of Dec. 31, 2019 rejected 88,700 applications out of the 126,300 it has processed since its establishment in summer 2017, according to a report drafted by the commission for the year 2019.

The commission said it is continuing to assess the remaining 28,000 applications. A total of 98,300 applications have been adjudicated by the commission thus far, of which only 9,600 have been concluded in favor of the applicants.

Turkey’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) government declared a state of emergency in the aftermath of a failed coup on July 15, 2016 that remained in effect until July 19, 2018.

During the state of emergency, the AKP issued a number of government decrees, known as KHKs, through which thousands of academics, politicians, teachers, doctors, officials, businessmen, artists and journalists were purged due to their real or alleged connections to the Gülen movement, which is accused by the government of being behind the failed coup. The movement strongly denies any involvement.

According to the report, a total of 125,678 people were removed from state posts while 270 students were expelled from their schools and 2,761 organizations were closed down after the coup attempt.


26 December 2019:

Turkey extends state of emergency commission mandate for a year

A presidential decree published on Thursday extended the term of a commission set up by the government to examine complaints from individuals who were adversely affected by government decree laws during a two-year state of emergency (OHAL) in Turkey, the Diken news website reported.

The commission still has some 28,000 cases to review, according to the report.

It has received a total of 126,300 applications, of which it has delivered rulings on 98,300, or 78 percent.

Of the cases reviewed, the commission has only approved 9,600.

Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) government declared a state of emergency in the wake of a failed coup on July 15, 2016 that remained in effect until July 19, 2018.

During the state of emergency, the government issued a series of government decrees, known as KHKs, through which thousands of academics, politicians, teachers, doctors, other public sector workers, businesspeople, artists and journalists were purged over real or alleged ties to the faith-based Gülen movement, which is accused by the government of being behind the failed coup. The movement strongly denies any involvement in it.

The commission accepts complaints regarding dismissal from public service, jobs or organizations; dismissal from university and the loss of student status; closure of associations, organizations, unions, federations, confederations, private health institutions, private education institutions, private institutions of higher education, private radio and TV organizations, newspapers and magazines, news agencies, publication houses and distribution channels; and the loss of retiree ranking through government decrees.

The Ministry of Justice announced in 2017 that with the establishment of the commission, some 12,600 cases that were awaiting review at the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) had been dropped by the court.

Critics expressed suspicion over the commission’s ability to serve justice.

Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy Şenal Sarıhan in July 2017 claimed that the commission was a “stillborn child.”

“This is also a deception of the ECtHR which thinks this is a functioning domestic remedy. With this regulation, people are both prevented from getting results from the ECtHR and making individual applications at Turkey’s Constitutional Court,” Sarıhan added.

The commission has been described by İbrahim Kaboğlu, a prominent constitutional law professor who is also a purge victim, as the AKP’s “gas chamber.”



3 May 2019:

Turkey releases details of state of emergency moves

Turkey on Friday released a report detailing the decisions taken during its state of emergency in the aftermath of a 2016 coup bid.  The Inquiry Commission on the State of Emergency Measures said the actions included dismissal from public service, cancellation of scholarships and closure of some institutions.

“Classification, registration and archiving of a total of 470,000 files [...] have been completed,” the commission said in a statement.

--Some 125,678 people were dismissed from public service, 3,213 people annulled of their ranks, and 270 student scholarships cancelled.  
--Also, 126,120 people have applied for reassessment so far and the commission has completed 70,406 inquiries.From --Dec. 22, 2017 to May 3, 2019 some 5,250 applications were accepted while 65,156 of them were rejected.
--There are still 55,714 pending applications.
--The commission announces 1,200 decisions every week following thorough examination.

The applicants can track their appeals on the commission's website.
The commission was established on May 22, 2017 after the defeated coup attempt in order to assess and conclude the applications.



10 November 2018:

Applications of 39,000 out of 42,000 purge victims rejected by OHAL commission


A commission set up by the Turkish government to look into complaints from individuals who were affected by government decrees during a state of emergency (OHAL) in Turkey has so far rejected 42,000 applications out of the 39,000 it has processed since its establishment in summer 2017, according to a statement from the commission on Friday.

The commission said it has received 125,000 applications so far since its establishment and continues to assess the remaining 83,000.

Turkey’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) government declared a state of emergency in the aftermath of a failed coup attempt in the country on July 15, 2016 that remained in effect until July 19, 2018.

During the state of emergency, the AKP issued a number of government decrees, known as KHKs, through which thousands of academics, politicians, teachers, doctors, officials, businessmen, artists and journalists were purged due to their real or alleged connections to the faith-based Gülen movement, which is accused by the government of being behind the failed coup. The movement strongly denies any involvement in the abortive putsch.

The commission accepts complaints regarding dismissal from the civil service, jobs or organizations; dismissal from university and the loss of student status; the closure of associations, organizations, unions, federations, confederations, private health institutions, private education institutions, private institutions of higher education, private radio and TV organizations, newspapers and magazines, news agencies, publication houses and distribution channels; and the loss of retiree ranking through government decrees.

Individuals whose applications have been rejected by the OHAL commission have the right, within 60 days, to file a case at the Ankara 19th and 20th administrative courts for cancellation of the decisions of the OHAL commission.