08 April 2008

One (Chinese) Door Closes....

...and another (Turkish) door opens:

Just days before Commission President José Manuel Barroso's visit to Ankara, the Turkish government has introduced a bill to soften a controversial article in the country's penal code outlawing criticism of Turkish identity.


The main change to the so-called "Turkishness" article is that the permission of the President would be needed to approve prosecutions related to cases where Turkish identity or the country's institutions have been insulted, Turkish media reported yesterday (7 April).

The proposed amendment would also decrease the maximum punishment from three to two years and replace the wording "denigrating Turkish identity" with "denigrating the Turkish nation" in an effort to eliminate the law's vague notion of "Turkishness".

Hardly total Turkish delight, but it's a move in the right direction, and to be commended for that.

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