In an emergency session, the Turkish parliament Sunday passed a reformed penal code viewed as crucial to its admission to the European Union. As previously reported on JURIST'S Paper Chase, after meeting with EU Enlargement Commissioner Guenter Verheugen, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on parliament to return from its summer recess and determine the fate of the reform in time for the anticipated October 6 EU report on whether accession talks with Turkey should begin. According to BBC News, some 70% of Turkish people support entry into the EU.
The president now has to ratify the law, which will take effect on April 1, 2005, apart from a few provisions which will come into force earlier or later. Turkish Press has more; NTV has a report from Istanbul in Turkish. Bloomberg has details on the key provisions of the new penal code, the latest in a long line of Turkish government initiatives bringing the country more in line with its western neighbors.