Turkey’s Erdogan to lift state of emergency if re-elected

The state of emergency lets Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan and the government bypass parliament in passing new laws and allows them to suspend rights and freedoms. Turkey’s election is scheduled on June 24. (Reuters)
Updated 14 June 2018
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Turkey’s Erdogan to lift state of emergency if re-elected

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has said the state of emergency that has been in place since July 2016 will be lifted if he is elected in June 24 elections, but suggested it would be reinstated if the country faces further threats.
“Should I continue this task after June 24, the first thing we’ll do is, God willing, lift the state of emergency,” Erdogan said in an interview with 24 TV on Wednesday night.
“Lifting the state of emergency does not mean abolishing it completely not to come back. We’ll take whatever the toughest precaution is again when we see terror.”
The state of emergency lets Erdogan and the government bypass parliament in passing new laws and allows them to suspend rights and freedoms. It was declared shortly after a failed coup attempt in July 2016 and has been extended every three months since then.
More than 160,000 people have been detained under the emergency rule and a similar number of civil servants have been sacked from their jobs, the United Nations has said. Scores of media outlets have been shut and journalists and activists have been detained.
Critics say Erdogan is using the state of emergency as a pretext to quash dissent. Turkey has said the measures are necessary to fend off the security threats it faces and that the state of emergency does not interfere with the campaign.
Erdogan said in April that businesses should welcome the state of emergency because it guards against terrorism and prevents workers from going on strike.


Egypt accuses UN of seeking to ‘politicize’ Morsi death

Updated 4 min 30 sec ago
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Egypt accuses UN of seeking to ‘politicize’ Morsi death

  • Egyptian foreign ministry spokesman said the UN is trying to politicize a natural death
  • The High Commissioner for Human Rights called for an independent investigation into the death of Morsi

CAIRO: Egypt accused the United Nations on Wednesday of seeking to “politicize” the death of the country’s first democratically elected president Mohammed Morsi by calling for an “independent inquiry.”

Foreign ministry spokesman Ahmed Hafez said he condemned “in the strongest terms” the call by the spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Rupert Colville, for an independent investigation into Morsi’s death during a court hearing on Monday.

Hafez said it was a “deliberate attempt to politicize a case of natural death.”

Colville called Tuesday for a probe into whether the conditions Morsi faced during his nearly six years in custody had contributed to his death.

“Any sudden death in custody must be followed by a prompt, impartial, thorough and transparent investigation carried out by an independent body to clarify the cause of death,” he said.

“Concerns have been raised regarding the conditions of Mr. Morsi’s detention, including access to adequate medical care, as well as sufficient access to his lawyers and family,” Colville added.

He said the investigation must “encompass all aspects of the authorities’ treatment of Mr. Morsi to examine whether the conditions of his detention had an impact on his death.”

Morsi was toppled by then army chief, now President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi in 2013 after a single divisive year in power. He was later charged with an array of offenses including espionage.

Since his ouster, authorities have waged an ongoing crackdown on dissent of all kinds that has seen thousands of Brotherhood supporters jailed and hundreds facing death sentences.

A group of British parliamentarians in March 2018 warned Morsi’s detention conditions, particularly inadequate treatment for his diabetes and liver disease, could trigger “premature death.”