Thursday, March 13, 2008

YÖK Order Annulled by Council of State

Turkey's highest administrative court, the Council of State, annulled an order by YÖK Chairman Yusuf Ziya Özcan demanding that university rectors allow türban-wearing students to enter university.

CHP officials had previously filed a criminal complaint against Özcan for unduly influencing university rectors to violate the Constitution (see Feb. 29 post), but that complaint was dismissed by Ankara's chief prosecutor's office as out of order. Other criminal complaints have been filed against those rectors who refuse to lift the ban.

Resolution of the issue will simply have to wait until the Constitutional Court decides on CHP's petition claiming February's amendments to be unconstitutional. Meanwhile, MHP continues to push for consideration of an amendment to Article 17 to the Higher Education Law so that a formal defintion of the türban can be offered in hopes of resolving the dispute. AKP has said that consideration of the amendment to Article 17 will be tabled until the Constitutional Court arrives at a decision as to the legality of the amendments.

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