Parliamentary Bylaw Could Save BRT Director From Jail

North Cyprus News - Meryem Ozkurt
[Meryem Özkurt – BRTK]
Thursday, 9 June 2022

A special amnesty law is to be voted on to lift the two-month prison sentence imposed on Meryem Özkurt, a director of state broadcasting corporation BRTK, Yeniduzen reported.

Despite the warning of the Supreme Election Board regarding elections bans in October 2020, Ms Özkurt, broadcast a ceremony which was held at the Gecitkoy reservoir following repairs made to the undersea pipeline which runs between southern Turkey and the North Cyprus coast.

Present at the ceremony were Turkish and Turkish Cypriot politicians and officials. Ms Özkurt,was under the impression that the Turkish Cypriot politicians would not speak as election bans were in place. However, they did speak and Ms Özkurt was indicted for broadcasting at the time. No other broadcasters were charged.

According to parliamentary bylaws, if a decision for amnesty is issued for Özkurt by the Supreme Election Board, a proposal will be prepared and it will be voted on at the General Assembly of Parliament five days after notification of this decision.

Observing this latest turn of events, retired Attorney-General Behiç Öztürk said the following:

The court has done its job. The law is clear, the judge can’t do anything. If there is a crime, he can give punishment by saying “this is at my discretion”. No one can say anything about the judge’s decision. In the end, Ms. Meryem also admitted to the crime. 

“Her lawyer announced that he was going to appeal. I wish the case could be discussed in the court of appeal quickly, and this matter could be resolved without the need for a committee. At this stage, I doubt that the case will be filed with the court of appeal. If the law passes, it may not be necessary”.


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