Gül Meets Opposition to Talk Charter Change

President Gül has initiated a round of talks with leaders of the country’s opposition parties as part of a campaign to promote proposed constitutional amendments. Gül started these talks by meeting with Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal May 5. Besides constitutional amendments, Gül and Baykal also discussed the issues of terrorism, opening the Turkey-Armenia border and Azerbaijani-Armenian relations during their meeting. Gül held talks with MHP leader Delve Bahçeli May 6 and will meet with Democratic Society Party (DTP), leader Ahmet Türk May 7.

Turkey’s constitution was adapted after the 1980 military intervention. It requires extensive amendments in order to meet EU requirements for fulfillment of democratic principles. AKP`s previous attempt to change the constitution were opposed by the main opposition party due to its insistence on sensitive issues such as lifting the ban on the headscarf. The Justice and Development Party (AKP), which has 337 deputies, needs the support of 30 additional deputies to change the Constitution without holding a referendum. 

Source: Hurriyet Daily News

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