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Turkey’s Parliament Passes Law Increasing State Oversight of NGOs
Meeting of the Turkish parliament, May 4, 2016 (Mark Lowen via WIkimedia Commons)

Turkey’s Parliament Passes Law Increasing State Oversight of NGOs

Turkey’s parliament approved a law providing for increased state oversight of foundations and other nongovernmental organizations. Critics say the law passed on Sunday will limit the freedom of the groups dedicated to improving civil society.

The law allows the government to place its own trustees on the boards of the NGOs and provides for an annual inspection by civil servants. In addition, local officials or the interior minister can freeze the groups’ assets or block them from receiving online donations, said to be a way to prevent money laundering or the financing of terror organizations. It also provides for fines of up to 200,000 liras ($26,500.60), which could lead to the closure of many foundations and NGOS.

The legislation was written by the AK Party of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

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