Turkish PM: No change to constitution’s basic articles

Binali Yıldırım says any amendment to first four founding articles of Turkish constitution out of question

Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım on Saturday has ruled out any possible change to Turkish constitution’s first four articles, which set forth the essentials of the Republic.
“So, we have not proposed [such a change]; nor we would have anything to do with those who want to [change] it. This is loud and clear. These [articles] form the foundation of the Republic of Turkey, and are indispensable for the state,” Yıldırım told reporters in Turkish parliament.

The first three articles of Turkish constitution lay out the basic principles of the country, saying the form of the “State being a Republic, as a democratic, secular and social state governed by rule of law, with Turkish as its language and Ankara as its capital. The fourth article guarantees that the first three are irrevocable.

Turkish lawmakers currently are voting a historic 18-article constitutional reform package in the parliament, with the first 13 of them already adopted as of Saturday night.

Among the articles that Turkish lawmakers passed so far are regulations for job definition and responsibilities of the parliament — one of the most discussed items — and regulating criminal liabilities for the president and top officials as well as election regulations.