Turkey’s main opposition party leader, Kemal K?l?çdaro?lu, has reiterated his firm stance on the preservation of the Turkish constitution’s first four articles while commenting on efforts for a new charter.
“They say let the new constitution come, let the constitution change. They blame us, too, in the meantime. We actually sat down to the table and said we would not negotiate on the first four articles. They say ‘no, we will change all of it,’” said K?l?çdaro?lu, the head of the Republican People’s Party (CHP), during an International Women’s Day event in Istanbul.
“In the first article, it says the Turkish state is a republic. What are you going to change about this? It is not known yet,” he said.
“I know what it is. The following articles say the Turkish Republic is a secular, democratic and social state of law. With its country and nation, it is an inseparable union, its language is Turkish. Its flag is red with a star and a crescent. Its national anthem is the Independence March. Its capital is Ankara. What are you going to change about this? We say that these are founding articles. We say that we would not change these... Nobody offered the Turkish Republic to us on a golden tray. Our fathers, grandfathers founded it with their tears and blood,” he said.
The first three articles of the Turkish constitution marks the principles of the Turkish state while the fourth one says the first three cannot be changed.
Also touching upon the constitution’s article on the equity of men and women, K?l?çdaro?lu urged the government to comply with the point, adding that the principle should be taken into account when a new constitution is being drafted.
“All mothers are in sorrow. Martyr news is coming every day. When they make calls for military draft, they do not send their kids but your kids. We are wise to these words. In practice you are going to hand women’s rights in. The constitution says that women and men have equal rights...We do not want any mother to cry. If they are going to cry, let it be from happiness,” he said.
“In the constitution, it says women and men are equal. The state is responsible for the realization of this equality. Never give up on this constitutional right. If someone tells you [men and women] are not equal, you will say ‘wait a minute, the constitution says they are.’ Do not give away your rights. You fought for them,” K?l?çdaro?lu said.
Source: Hurriyet Daily News