ANKARA - Draft bill presented to the Justice Commission of Turkish Parliament on June 30 by President Erdoğan’s AKP aiming to form 'multiple bar associations' in each of Turkey’s provinces is accepted by the Justice Commission of Turkish Parliament.
The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has introduced a comprehensive bill to parliament to change the bar systems aiming to split the bars, which resulted in huge reaction from the bars and thousands of lawyers. Kicked off in the Justice Commission on July 2, discussions for the draft bill consisting of 28 articles has ended and the commission has passed the bill.
Afterwards, it will be brought to the agenda of the General Assembly of Parliament for a final voting process.
According to the accepted articles, more than one bar can be established in the same province if certain conditions are met. If there is more than one bar association in the same province, the request to be registered at the bar can be made to any bar. A harmonization arrangement is made for the system that allows the establishment of more than one bar in one province. Accordingly, if there is more than one bar in the same province, the lawyer will be registered in any bar in that city.
Together with the bar heads tens of bars and thousands of lawyers have been protesting the draft bill as they criticize the bill to have an objective to reduce the power and influence of three main bar associations, namely Istanbul, Ankara and İzmir, by the formation of alternative associations. Only one bar is currently allowed per province. The bar associations say that the new legislation is an attempt to divide, scatter and control them.