21 June 2018 Thursday

(E.2018/1 (Miscellaneous Work), K.2018/9, 21 June 2018)

Ground for the Request

The Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office of the Court of Cassation requested the nullification of the name and logo of the Workers’ Party of Turkey and its erasure from registry for being essentially the same of a party which was permanently dissolved by the Constitutional Court.

The Court’s Assessment

The principle, which sets out that political parties cannot use the names of the political parties that have been permanently dissolved by the Constitutional Court and that they cannot declare themselves to be the continuation (follower) of the dissolved parties, was introduced through the amendment to Article 96 of the Political Parties Act no. 2820 by Article 8 of the Law no. 3821. This principle took effect on 3 July 1992. As such a prohibition was not previously in force, a new party was founded in 1975 under the name of the Workers’ Party of Turkey that was dissolved by the Constitutional Court in 1971. However, it was then dissolved, along with the other parties, by virtue of the Law on the Dissolution of Political Parties numbered 2533 and dated 16 October 1981. 

Therefore, the Workers’ Party of Turkey is a political party that was dissolved by the Law no. 2533 issued by the National Security Council. The Law no. 3821 allows for the re-foundation of political parties dissolved by virtue of the Law no. 2533 and for use −by the other parties− of names, logos and emblem of the parties that are founded outside of a specified period. Regard being had to the explicit authorization in the Law no. 3821, there is no obstacle for the Workers’ Party of Turkey founded in 2017 to use the name and logo of the Workers’ Party of Turkey which was dissolved by the Law no. 2533. 

For the reasons explained above, the Court rejected the request for the nullification of the name and logo of the Workers’ Party of Turkey and its erasure from registry.