Constitution of the Republic of Turkey

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Basic data
Title: Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Anayasası
Short title: Anayasa
Abbreviation: AY
Number: 2709
Type: Constitution
Scope: Republic of Turkey
Adoption date: November 7, 1982
Official Journal : No. 17863 / Mükerrer v. November 9, 1982, p. 1 ff.
( PDF file; 2.69 MB )
Please note the note on the applicable legal version .

The Constitution of the Republic of Turkey ( Turkish: Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Anayasası ; Law No. 2709) of November 7, 1982 together with the changes made by the constitutional referendum in Turkey 2017 is the current constitution of Turkey and thus the legal and political basic order of the state.


On September 12, 1980 , the military seized power for the third time and imposed martial law on the country. With Act No. 2324 on the Constitutional Order of October 27, 1980, the constitution of 1961 was partially repealed and Generals Kenan Evren , Nurettin Ersin , Tahsin Şahinkaya , Sedat Celasun and Admiral Nejat Tümer took over as the National Security Council (NSR) Executive and legislative powers . The judiciary remained formally unaffected, but was in fact not insignificantly restricted. For example, laws passed by the NSR could not be checked for constitutional conformity.

Law No. 2485 of June 29, 1981 established a Constituent Assembly (Kurucu Meclis) consisting of the NSR and the Consultative Assembly (Danışma Meclisi) . The advisory assembly consisted of a total of 160 members. 40 were determined directly by the NSR; the remaining members were first proposed by the governors and then appointed by the NSC. The chairman was the politician and former Prime Minister Sadi Irmak .

The Constituent Assembly had the task of drawing up a new constitution as well as a party and election law. It also took on the task of legislating.

A 15-member constitutional committee was formed from the ranks of the Consultative Assembly, chaired by the constitutional lawyer Orhan Aldıkaçtı . Between November 23, 1981 and July 17, 1982, the latter drew up a draft constitution, which was first adopted by the Consultative Assembly on September 23, 1982 and then adopted by the NSR on October 18, 1982. On November 7, 1982 the constitution was adopted by referendum with 91.37% of the votes and came into force on November 9, 1982.

Parliamentary elections finally took place on November 6, 1983, after which the Constituent Assembly was dissolved under Article 177 of the Constitution.

In a referendum on September 12, 2010, 57.93 percent of the voters voted for the most comprehensive constitutional amendments since 1982. The amendments were intended to adapt the Turkish constitution to the norms of democracy according to Western standards .

In the referendum on April 16, 2017, u. a. on the abolition of military jurisdiction, the abolition of the Council of Ministers and the transfer of its powers to the President and thus the introduction of a presidential system of government . On that day, those entitled to vote voted to amend a total of 69 articles of the constitution. In July 2018, the constitutional amendments adopted on April 16, 2017 came into force.


The constitution consists of a preamble, 177 articles and two transitional articles , which are divided into seven parts:

  • Part One: General Principles (Articles 1-11)
  • Part Two: Fundamental Rights and Obligations (Articles 12-74)
  • Part Three: The Main Organs of the Republic (Articles 75–160)
  • Fourth part: Financial and economic regulations (Articles 161-173)
  • Fifth part: other provisions (Article 174)
  • Sixth part: transitional provisions (Article 6–15)
  • Seventh part: final provisions (Articles 175-177)

Part One: General Principles (Articles 1-11)

In Article 2, Turkey defines itself as a “ democratic , secular and social state based on the rule of law ”, which is linked to the “good of the community, national solidarity and justice, human rights and Ataturk's nationalism ”.

The President acts as the “guardian of the constitution” (Art. 1, Paragraph 4) and is the head of state of Turkey, who is to oversee the “application of the constitution and the orderly and harmonious activity of the state organs”.

Article 5 defines the "basic objectives and tasks of the state":

“The basic goals and tasks of the state are to protect the independence and unity of the Turkish people, the indivisibility of the country, the republic and democracy, to ensure prosperity, well-being and happiness of the citizens and the community, the political, economic and to remove social obstacles which restrict the fundamental rights and freedoms of the person in a manner incompatible with the principles of the social rule of law and justice, as well as to endeavor to create the conditions necessary for the development of the material and ideal existence of man. "

Mainly because of the "national unitary state" enshrined in the constitution, Turkey is administered centrally .

Part Two: Fundamental Rights and Obligations (Articles 12-74)

The second part is divided into the following sections:

  • Section One: General Provisions (Articles 12-16)
  • Section Two: Rights and Obligations of the Person (Articles 17-40)
  • Section Three: Social and Economic Rights and Obligations (Articles 41-65)
  • Fourth section: Political rights and obligations (Articles 66–74)

Article 24 declares the fundamental right to freedom of religion .

Article 38 establishes the principle of Nulla poena sine lege ( No punishment without law ). That's the first paragraph

“Nobody may be punished for a criminal offense that was not considered to be such on the basis of a law in force at the time it was committed; no one may receive a more severe punishment than that which was determined for this offense by the law in force at the time the offense was committed. "

Article 51 states that “[t] he workers and employers ... have the right to set up workers 'and employers' organizations without prior permission in order to protect and develop the economic and social rights and interests within the industrial relations of their members ... ". However, the right to form trade unions and employers' organizations "to protect national security, public order, prevent crime, protect general health and general morality, and the rights and freedoms of others, may be restricted by law."

In Article 66, Turkish citizenship is anchored.

Part Three: The Main Organs of the Republic (Articles 75–160)

The third part is divided into the following sections:

  • Section one: Legislation (Articles 75-100)
  • Section Two: The Executive (Articles 101-137)
  • Third section: case law (Articles 138-160)

According to Article 75 of the Constitution, the Grand National Assembly of Turkey has consisted of 550 members since 1995. According to the constitution, MPs represent the whole people and not, for example, a party or region. In addition, the Turkish constitution has detailed rules on the incompatibility between certain offices in the government and the judiciary as well as the mandate of parliament.

Article 104 of the Turkish constitution regulates the powers of the head of state.

According to Art. 118 of the Turkish Constitution, the members of the National Security Council are the Commander-in-Chief of the Army , Navy , Air Force and Gendarmerie , the Chief of Staff , the Prime Minister, his deputies, the Foreign , Interior and Defense Ministers as well as the Chairman of the Council of the President.

Articles 119–122 regulate four forms of martial law and a state of emergency in Turkey .

Fourth part: Financial and economic regulations (Articles 161-173)

The fourth part is divided into sections

  • Section One: Financial Provisions (Articles 161–165)
  • Section Two: Economic Rules (Articles 166-173)

Fifth to Seventh Parts (Articles 174-177)

  • Fifth part: other provisions (Article 174)
  • Sixth part: transitional provisions (Article 1–16)
  • Seventh part: final provisions (Articles 175-177)

Constitutional amendment

In accordance with Article 175 of the Constitution of the Republic of Turkey, at least one third of the total number of members of the Turkish Grand National Assembly can propose a constitutional amendment. This must be approved by at least three fifths (60%) and then confirmed in a referendum. On the other hand, if there is a two-thirds majority in parliament, this referendum is no longer necessary.


Web links


  1. Kemal Gözler: Türk Anayasa Hukuku. Ekin Kitabevi Yayınları, Bursa 2000, ISBN 975-7338-57-5 , p. 96.
  2. Die Presse : Success for Erdogan: Turkey votes for a new constitution , September 12, 2010.
  3. ^ The "new" political system in Turkey. In: . April 17, 2017. Retrieved August 21, 2018 .
  4. The Constitution of the Republic of Turkey of November 7, 1982 ( Memento of the original of September 22, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link has been inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. , (German) @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  5. full text
  6. For the subtleties of this regulation, see full text