Local Government

Executive Decree 674 Articles 38-39 have made additions to the Law on Municipalities specifying that a mayor or deputy mayor dismissed or convicted for aiding and abetting terror or terror groups shall be replaced by special administrators, who will be determined by the Minister of Interior in metropolitan municipalities and provincial municipalities, and by the governor in smaller municipalities.

Even in those municipalities where a special administrator has not been appointed, this executive decree has restricted the authorities of mayors and deputy mayors. In municipalities or affiliated administrations, in case the governor’s office decides that the disruption of services can or will adversely affect counterterrorism efforts, it may have the said service delivered via the Investment Monitoring and Coordination Departments, special provincial administration or public agencies and institutions.

Furthermore, if the governor’s office decides that the means of the municipality and affiliated administrations are being used to provide indirect or direct support to terror acts or violence, such movables belonging to the municipality or affiliated administration can be seized by the most senior civilian authority in the district. If the municipality or affiliated administration staff determined to be guilty of such action are removed from public office by the governor or district governor as per this article, they may be reinstated to office only by the authority that removed them in the first place.

These amendments made in the Law on Municipalities were accepted in Parliament without any change. Afterwards, the Minister of Interior sent a communique to all governors on November 11, 2016, stating that the co-mayor system in municipalities has been declared to be illegal, and that appointments of co-mayors will be deemed to be criminal acts.

Executive Decree 678 Article 11 has added a new article to the Law on Municipalities, specifying that in municipalities hit by disaster, mass migration or terror, or in municipalities whose mayor has been replaced due to ties to terror groups, the governor or new mayor may demand another municipality to provide municipal services. The municipality whose aid is requested can deliver such services upon the permission of the Minister of Interior.