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The first part of the Bill of Law on Amendments to be Introduced to Some Laws and Statutory Decrees, which foresees new regulations concerning fight against terrorism, was discussed at the General Assembly of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey (TBMM) yesterday (July 23).
During the discussions, the İstanbul MP of the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) Ahmet Şık took the floor on behalf of his party.
Attacked by the İzmir MP of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) Alpay Özalan, Şık could not complete his speech.
After the HDP MPs intervened to stop Özalan and other AKP MPs, who attempted to prevent Şık's right to speak, the Deputy Parliament Speaker Mustafa Şentop paused the session for five minutes. The MPs continued arguing in front of the rostrum for a while and returned to their seats after some time.
Şentop demanded penalty for Şık
After the five-minute break, Şentop claimed that the statements of Ahmet Şık violated the Internal Regulation of the Parliament and proposed that Şık be given a penalty of being temporarily taken out of two parliamentary sessions.
Upon this proposal, the Group Deputy Chairperson of the HDP Fatma Kurtalan stated, "Şık made those statements from the perspective of ethical values and did not target any of the MPs personally."
Following the statements of Kurtalan, Şentop put the proposal foreseeing penalty for Ahmet Şık to vote as per the Article no. 161 of the Internal Regulation of the Parliament.
Şık and HDP MPs left the hall
Şık was given a penalty of being temporarily taken out of two parliamentary sessions by the vote. In response, Ahmet Şık and other HDP MPs left the General Assembly Hall.
As part of the related penalty, two thirds of Şık's monthly allowance and travelling expenses will be cut. (HK/SD)
* Photograph: Orhan Karslı - Ankara / AA