Grand National Assembly of Turkey

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The Grand National Assembly (Turkish: Türkiye Büyük Millet Meclisi - TBMM, usually referred to simply as Meclis) is the unicameral parliament of Turkey which carries out legislative functions. Election of its 550 members, who serve five-year terms, is by D'Hondt method, a party-list proportional representation system. To participate in the distribution of seats, a party must obtain at least 10% of the votes cast at the national level as well as a percentage of votes in the contested district.

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[edit] History

Turkey has had a history of Parliamentary government before the establishment of the current national Parliament:

[edit] Parliamentary practice

Turkey had two Parliamentary governments during the Ottoman period. The First Constitutional Era lasted for only a brief period, elections being held only twice. After the first elections there were a number of criticisms of the government due to the Russo-Turkish War, 1877–1878 by the representatives, and the assembly was dissolved and an election called on 28 June 1877. The second assembly was also dissolved by the Sultan on 14 February 1878.

The Second Constitutional Era is considered to have begun on 23 July 1908. The constitution that was written for the first parliament included control of the sultan on the public and was removed during 1909, 1912, 1914 and 1916, in a session known as the "declaration of freedom". Most of the modern parliamentary rights were that not granted in the first constitution were granted, such as the abolition of the right of the Sultan to deport citizens that were claimed to have committed harmful activities, the establishment of a free press, a ban on censorship. Freedom to hold meetings and establish political parties was recognized, and the government was held responsible to the assembly, not to the sultan.

[edit] Establishment of the national parliament

Image:3b16b.jpg
The first Grand National Assembly of the modern Republic of Turkey, Ankara, 1920

After the World War I, Ottoman Empire was shared. The political existence of the Turkish nation was completely eliminated under these plans, except for a small region. Turkish voice rose from/within the Anatolian peninsula through establishment of Turkish national movement which the political developments during this period that had lasted for years and also determine the character of the Turkish nation. During the Turkish war of independece Mustafa Kemal put forth that there would be only one way for the liberation of the Turkish people aftermath of World War I; it is through independent Turkish State based on national sovereignty.

[edit] Passage to national constitution

Mustafa Kemal published his famous 19 March 1920 announcement. In this speech "an Assembly would be gathered in Ankara that would possess extraordinary powers, how the members who would participate in the assembly would be elected and the need to undertake elections at the latest within fifteen days". He also added that the members of the dispersed Chamber of Deputies could also participate in the assembly in Ankara, to increase the representational power of the parlement. The Turkish Grand National Assembly, established on national sovereignty, held its first opening session 23 April 1920.

Image:TBMMpic.jpg
The main chamber of the Grand National Assembly in session

[edit] Continuity

Parliament has existed continuously except during the 1960 and 1981 coups[citation needed]. Between 23 April 1920 and 2004 there have been 56 parliaments[citation needed]

[edit] Current composition

As of 28 September 2006

Parties No. of seats
Initial Current
Image:AKP Logo.png Justice and Development Party Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi (AKP) 363 355
Image:Chp logo.PNG Republican People's Party Cumhuriyet Halk Partisi (CHP) 178 154
Image:Anavatan.jpg Motherland Party Anavatan Partisi (ANAP) 0 21
Image:Dypartisi.PNG True Path Party Doğruyol Partisi (DYP) 0 4
Image:Shplogo.gif Social Democratic People's Party Sosyaldemokrat Halk Partisi (SHP) 0 1
People's Ascent Party Halkın Yükselişi Partisi (HYP) 0 1
Image:Gencparti.PNG Young Party Genç Parti (GP) 0 1
Independents Bağımsız 9 9
Vacant Seats Boş - 4
Total 550 550

Please note that the distribution of seats has changed since the latest elections in 2002.

[edit] Latest election

For the latest and previous elections, check the Elections in Turkey.

[edit] See also

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