TURKEY

Turkish parliament to debate state of emergency Monday

TURKISH PARLIAMENT TO DEBATE STATE OF EMERGENCY MONDAY

The parliament will debate on Monday whether to extend the ongoing state of emergency in Turkey for another three more months, a source from the ruling party's parliamentary group told Anadolu Agency.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Prime Minister Binali Yildirim had signaled in their speeches earlier that the state of emergency would be extended.

The extension is expected to become effective from Wednesday, the source, who wished to stay anonymous due to restrictions on talking to the media, said.

Opposition Nationalist Movement Party is expected to support the move in the general assembly.

Turkey declared a state of emergency on July 20, 2016, after the defeated coup of July 15, 2016.

During the state of emergency, the Cabinet has the right to issue statutory decrees under the president of the republic without regard to routine procedures and restrictions in Article 91 of the country's Constitution. These decrees are first published in the official gazette and then submitted to parliament for ratification.

The deputies will also debate the Prime Ministry's resolution aimed at extending the term of duty of Turkish soldiers in the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon, also known as UNIFIL.

The term of duty of the soldiers, which was first approved by the parliament in September 2006, will be extended from Sept. 5, 2017 to Oct. 31, 2018.

The UNIFIL was established in 1978 when Israel withdrew from Lebanon. The peacekeeping force is intended to provide security and help the Lebanese government rebuild its authority.

Almost 10,600 troops from 40 countries are part of the UNIFIL mission.

The parliament will also vote to deploy troops to the Central African Republic and Mali as part of an U.N.-approved EU peacekeeping mission.

Meanwhile, the parliament's constitutional committee will continue to debate the changes to a number of parliamentary bylaws.

The bylaw changes are expected to come to the agenda of the general assembly after July 24; the changes, agreed by the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party and opposition MHP, are amid at improving the parliament's efficiency.

In a referendum this April, Turkish voters approved a package of constitutional changes, handing wide-ranging executive powers to the president and eliminating the post of prime minister, and also allowing the president to retain ties to a political party.

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