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A brief HSYK update

October 18, 2010

Since I just went through the HSYK’s big controversial resignations last week, I’d be remiss if I didn’t update on this week’s latest HSYK shenanigans. Yes, this weekend the nation’s judges and prosecutors went to the polls to vote in 10 full members of the Supreme Board of Judges and Prosecutors (HSYK) and six reserve members, part of a series of HSYK expansion member elections.

There were just under 11,000 judges and prosecutors eligible to vote (says Hurriyet, although Zaman says nearly 12,000), although they didn’t all vote for all the spots – judges and prosecutors in the judicial court system elected seven regular members and four reserve members, while judges and prosecutors in the administrative court system elected three regular members and two reserve members. There were 201 candidates for the 16 spots, but more important than any of the individual candidates were the lists – the Justice Ministry’s slate of candidates and the Judges and Prosecutors’ Association’s (YARSAV) slate of candidates. As the candidates weren’t allowed to actively campaign, it seems fairly likely that most judges and prosecutors relied on various parties’ slates to cast their votes.
I don’t think all too many observers were surprised by the results – all the Justice Ministry’s candidate’s won. If you’ll recall, last week all full HSYK members except the justice minister, Justice Ministry undersecretary, and Ali Suat Ertosun resigned. I think it’s fairly safe to say Ertosun is no government favorite, but the other two are Justice Ministry representatives and the newly elected judges include the Justice Ministry deputy undersecretary and head of the personnel department, as well as the head of the Justice Academy (hands up, how many of us think that sounds like a superhero training school?), which is under the jurisdiction of the ministry.
That was just the most exciting HSYK decision-making on Sunday, though. The Supreme Court of Appeals also chose three regular HSYK members and three reserve members under the new system, selecting Zeynep Nilgün Hacımahmutoğlu, Ahmet Karayiğit and Ulvi Yüksel as full members and Erkan Öztürk, Ömer Hicri Tuna and Rahmi Ünal as reserve members.
The Council of State chose two regular members and two reserve members of the expanded HSYK; they selected Ziya Özcan and Zeynep Kavlak as regular members and Gürsel Mekik and Neşe Sarı as reserves (I believe that was Monday, it may have been Sunday; Turkish newspapers tend to consider time elements as not-so-necessary in articles). The president will select four full members, the Justice Academy will choose one full member (as far as I can tell these five have not yet been selected), and that will be the expanded HSYK.

In a hopefully clearer format, here’s what the new and improved HSYK looks like at the moment:
• Justice Minister Sadullah Ergin (HSYK head, no longer technically a member and not counted as one of the HSYK’s 22 members)
• Justice Ministry Undersecretary Ahmet Kahraman (The 22nd member, Kahraman will not sit on any of the three subdepartments of the expanded HSYK)
• Ali Suat Ertosun (From the original HSYK)
• Justice Ministry Deputy Undersecretary İbrahim Okur (elected by judicial judges and prosecutors on Sunday)
• Justice Ministry Personnel Department Director Birol Erdem (elected by administrative judges and prosecutors on Sunday)
• Justice Academy Training Center Director Ahmet Kaya (elected by judicial judges and prosecutors on Sunday)
• Teoman Gökçe (elected by judicial judges and prosecutors on Sunday)
• Ömer Köroğlu (elected by judicial judges and prosecutors on Sunday)
• Nesibe Özer (elected by judicial judges and prosecutors on Sunday)
• Hüseyin Serter (elected by judicial judges and prosecutors on Sunday)
• İsmail Aydın (elected by judicial judges and prosecutors on Sunday)
• Ahmet Berberoğlu (elected by administrative judges and prosecutors on Sunday)
• Resum Yıldırım (elected by administrative judges and prosecutors on Sunday)
• Zeynep Nilgün Hacımahmutoğlu (elected by Supreme Court of Appeals on Sunday)
• Ahmet Karayiğit (elected by Supreme Court of Appeals on Sunday)
• Ulvi Yüksel (elected by Supreme Court of Appeals on Sunday)
• Ziya Özcan (elected by Council of State on Sunday)
• Zeynep Kavlak (elected by Council of State on Sunday)
• Blank (to be selected by President Gül from academics and lawyers)
• Blank (to be selected by President Gül from academics and lawyers)
• Blank (to be selected by President Gül from academics and lawyers)
• Blank (to be selected by President Gül from academics and lawyers)
• Justice Academy Chairman Ahmet Hamsici (to be selected by the Justice Academy)

Sources: CNNTurk, Hürriyet, Zaman


So that’s Turkey’s current Supreme Board of Judges and Prosecutors. I’ll try to update with titles as I track those down; there are some fairly high-level judges in the freshman class. On the bright side, they now have quorum, so could convene their first meetings since mid-August. That’s progress.

Update Oct. 22: Justice Academy’s pick is in and updated

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