A court order has ruled that the police forces should not need any court warrants to carry out full check on individuals whomever they might suspect. The permit is originally applicable only during declarations of martial law to sustain public peace. Police chief of Ankara and vice-mayor had asked for an all inclusive “pre-emptive” permit last month and it is now granted by an Ankara court.
The stated reason for police’s request was “to ensure national security and public peace, protect general health and general understanding of morality, as well as protecting citizens rights and liberties, and to prevent crimes, circulation of weapons or explosives that are banned from possessing or using, to detect weapons and explosives”.
The permit concerns over 3 million citizens residing in central Ankara, and gives police to check and control the people, their personal belongings, vehicles and other possessions.Vagueness of the permit raises a lot of questions such as if the people will be granted their regular rights such as keeping silent or consulting to their lawyers.
While this application will surely remind one of the infamous military coup days that are not stranger to Turkey, it brings up a new term like “police coup” as the police forces enjoy above-the-law unlimited authority to harass and provoke people arbitrarily on the street. In a country where police violence has been a bleeding wound, this new pre-emptive permit will bring further trouble to already vibrant agenda in the country.
With a little more than a month until local elections, corruption scandal occupying the daily agenda with all its weight and newly approved censorship and surveillance bill, the streets seem to be the place that will decide on the future of the country; so the state officials are taking precautions to prevent any possible reaction against repression of rights and misuse of public funds.