Changes to the Law no. 1111 on Military Service

Amendments to the Law on Military Service also seem to be mainly designed to redefine civilian-military relations.

The Executive Decree 669 has transferred the military hospitals to the control of Ministry of Health. Accordingly, an amendment to Law no. 1111 on Military Service has stipulated that the health check of conscripts will be conducted by their family doctor, if not, by a single doctor at the closest health clinic. The health clinics and health boards designated by the Ministry of Health were granted the authority to issue all sorts of health reports about the conscripts. All checks and controls in this regard have been declared free of charge (Executive Decree 674 Article 45; Executive Decree 676 Article 48). In the law text, all occurrences of the word “military hospital” were replaced by official health institution, health boards authorized by Ministry of Health, etc. (Executive Decree 676 Article 49-52).

An article added to the Law on Military Service stipulates that the relevant articles of the law will apply to the male children (from the same father) of those martyred while resisting the coup attempt of July 15 and ensuing events, even though they were not under the obligation of doing so. As such, one of the male children or brothers of those killed during July 15 will be exempt from military service (Executive Decree 678 Article 12).

Another amendment to the law stipulates that, the biological children and all whole brothers of those civilians who have lost their lives during their military service in events that fall under the scope of the Law no. 3713 on Counterterrorism or who were killed in a terrorist attack, will not be conscripted unless they themselves volunteer; and that, once under military service, they can be discharged whenever they wish. The same rules will apply for the biological children and one whole brother of civil servants (including security guards) (Executive Decree Article1)

In the section titled “sergeants and privates taking leave of their contingent for change of air”, the procedures and principles governing the granting of additional leaves to sergeants and privates with an excellent record have been redefined. The difference between the old and new texts is that, owing to the separation of the Gendarmerie General Command and Coast Guard Command from the Turkish Armed Forces, the authority to determine the related procedures and principles has been extended to include not only the General Staff but also the force commands (Executive Decree 680 Article 24).

The following article was included in the said law: “Those military conscripts who have membership, affiliation or relation to terrorist organizations or structures, formations and groups deemed by the National Security Council to engage in actions against the state’s national security, and are capable of military service, -including draft evaders and those who do not present one of the excuses mentioned in this law- will be drafted according to the summons and conscription procedures determined by the Ministry of National Defense” (Executive Decree 691 Article 2).

After an amendment to the Law on Military Service, the summons and conscription announcements of the Ministry of National Defense, which were previously disseminated only via Turkish Radio and Television Corporation, will now also be disseminated by other nationwide TV and radio channels as obligatory broadcasts (Executive Decree 694 Article 3-4).

Another amendment to the law specifies that military conscripts assigned aboard will have to pay the transfer fees and other fees for their payments in foreign currency or make a transfer to special foreign exchange accounts (Executive Decree 696 Art 2.)

Changes to the Law no. 1111 on Military Service