Three Branches of Government: Turkey’s Struggle to Understand Democracy

Turkey’s problems in understanding democracy, human rights and freedoms were always -at least partly- structural. In the last twelve years, the government in power made it practically official. Since the Republic of Turkey was founded, we have tried to meet civilised standards, sometimes it worked out alright, most of the time it did not. However, up to this point, this ineptness was either personal, or ideology-based. The idea of a “republic” was not the thing that created problems, it was the choice of the powerful every time. Turkey experienced some coup d’etat attempts, a few of which were successful, but, even under military rule, the lines separating the powers, that is, three branches of government, have never been so blurred. We can add the “single-party” regime in the beginning of the new republic as an exception. Some of the aspects of “that” issue can be justified, some others cannot. What I will do in this article is to point out the current problems regarding these three branches, pillars or “estates” in Turkey. The point of view here is concerned with the “legislative”, the “judiciary” and the “executive” branches.

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