• Esin Deniz Esmerok
“I prefer a man who will burn the flag and then wrap himself in the Constitution to a man who will burn the Constitution and then wrap himself in the flag.”1 This quotation is said by American congressman Craig Washington. The importance of a constitution for a country is greater than many ethical norms for many people. However, what happens when the constitution is not representing everyone's rights or undermines some of the norms such as democracy and freedom of speech just like it is claimed to be with the Turkey's new constitution, which is also claimed to promote the democratization.

This descriptive-normative driven thesis mainly focuses on the new constitution of Turkey and its amendments. I will be focusing on the problematic amendments which are claimed to undermine the democracy related to the jurisdictional system and promote one side of the political arena. The new constitution is accepted by the referendum which was held early September, with 58% “yes” to 42% “no”. Both of these numbers are representing a large amount of people of Turkey with almost seventy-five million population. After the conflictual passing of the new constitution, enforcement of amendments especially on the jurisdictional system increases new conflicts regarding the rights of women, the freedom of speech and democratization.

The main focus of this research will be related to the relationship between Turkey and the European Union, since the European Union (EU) described the amendments necessary even though there was a huge protests to them. In that emphasizes, I will focus on the concepts of democracy, jurisdiction, legitimacy and fragmentation in society with definition's of the European Union. Moreover, I will focus on the political arena of Turkey by introducing the sides of AKP, CHP and MHP. In the road to European Union membership, the new constitution's implementation is based on two scenarios as a result of Turkey's fragmented politics. One scenario suggests that jurisdiction, democracy and secularism is being attacked by the amendments and the other one suggests AKP's agenda and the new constitution are relevant with the European Union's requirements for membership.
Publication date1 Jun 2011
Number of pages79
ID: 52649559