New Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu and Justice Minister Bekir Bozdağ have reportedly decided to boycott the Supreme Court of Appeals after the court defied President-elect Recep Tayyip Erdoğan by inviting Turkish Bar Association (TBB) Chairman Metin Feyzioğlu to deliver a speech at the opening ceremony of the new judicial year on Sept. 1.
The Taraf daily reported on Tuesday that Davutoğlu and Bozdağ will not participate in the ceremony as a show of support for Erdoğan.
On Aug. 15, Erdoğan declared that he would not attend the ceremony if Feyzioğlu were invited to speak at the event. The conflict between Erdoğan and Feyzioğlu dates back to early May, when the former stormed out of the Council of State building after scolding the TBB chairman for his speech. Feyzioğlu, during his address, questioned the Justice and Development Party’s (AK Party) violations of personal rights and freedoms.
Erdoğan interrupted Feyzioğlu’s speech in response, claiming that it was political and full of untruths. He then left the hall.
After Erdoğan’s remarks in August, Supreme Court of Appeals Chairman Ali Alkan publicly stated that he would raise the issue at a meeting of the court’s executive members. The meeting was held on Monday afternoon, with the court deciding that Feyzioğlu will be allowed to make an address at the opening ceremony.
Also on Monday, Erdoğan received Alkan at the Office of the Prime Ministry. The chair of the Supreme Court of Appeals visited Erdoğan to officially invite him to attend the opening ceremony of the new judicial year as the new president.
Feyzioğlu told the Turkish media on Monday that he will also attend the ceremony. “I will absolutely attend the event. The ceremony is organized by the Supreme Court of Appeals, but one of the hosts [of the ceremony] is the TBB. I am not a guest. I am one of the hosts of the event. The Supreme Court of Appeals has already sent us [the TBB] the program for the event,” he noted.