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- Year: 1991
- Country: Turkey
- Language: English
- Document Type: Domestic Law or Regulation
- Topic: Counterterrorism and Money Laundering
[TERRORLAW] Act No. 3713:
LAW TO FIGHT TERRORISM
[Published in the Official Gazette on 12 April 1991]
Definition of Terrorism and Terrorist Offences
Definition of Terrorism:
Article 1. (1) Terrorism is any kind of act done by one or more persons
belonging to an organization with the aim of changing the characteristics
of the Republic as specified in the Constitution, its political, legal,
social, secular and economic system, damaging the indivisible unity of the
State with its territory and nation, endangering the existence of the
Turkish State and Republic, weakening or destroying or seizing the authority
of the State, eliminating fundamental rights and freedoms, or damaging the
internal and external security of the State, public order or general health
by means of pressure, force and violence, terror, intimidation, oppression
(2) An organization for the purposes of this Law is constituted by two or
more persons coming together for a common purpose.
(3) The term “organization” also includes formations, associations, armed
associations, gangs or armed gangs as described in the Turkish Penal Code and
in the provisions of special laws.
Article 2. (1) Any member of an organization, founded to attain the aims
defined in Article 1, who commits a crime in furtherance of these aims,
individually or in concert with others, or any member of such an
organization, even if he does not commit such a crime, shall be deemed to
be a terrorist offender.
(2) Persons who are not members of a terrorist organization, but commit a
crime in the name of the organization, are also deemed to be terrorist
offenders and shall be subject to the same punishment as members of
Article 3. Offences defined in Articles 125, 131, 146, 147, 148, 149, 156,
168, 171 and 172 of the Turkish Penal Code are terrorist offences.
Offences committed for terrorist purposes:
Article 4. In applying this Law offences defined in:
a) Articles 145, 150, 151, 152, 153, 154, 155, 169 and the second
paragraph of Article 499 of the Turkish Penal Code and
b) offences defined in Article 9, part (b), (c) and (e) of Law 2845
on the Foundation and Criminal Procedure at State Security Courts
are terrorist offences if they are committed for terrorist purposes as
described in Article 1.
Increase of sentences:
Article 5. Penalties of imprisonment and fines imposed according to the
respective laws for those committing crimes as described in Articles 3
and 4 above shall be increased by one half. In doing so the penalties may
exceed the maximum penalty for that or any other crime. However, in the
case of rigorous imprisonment the penalty may not exceed 36 years’, in case
of [ordinary] imprisonment 25 years’, and in case of light imprisonment
10 years’ imprisonment.
Disclosure and publication:
Article 6. (1) Those who announce that the crimes of a terrorist organization
are aimed at certain persons, whether or not such persons are named, or who
disclose or publish the identity of officials on anti-terrorist duties, or
who identify such persons as targets shall be punished with a fine of between
5 and 10 million Turkish liras.
(2) Those who print or publish leaflets and declarations of terrorist
organizations shall be punished with a fine of between 5 and 10 million
(3) Those who, in contravention of Article 14 of this law, disclose or
publish the identity of informants shall be punished with a fine of between 5
and 10 million Turkish liras.
(4) If any of the offences defined above are committed by periodicals
as described in Article 3 of Press Law No. 5680 their publishers shall be
punished additionally by the imposition of fines as follows: for periodicals
published at less than monthly intervals the fine shall be 90 per cent of the
average real sales of the previous month, for periodicals issued monthly or
at longer intervals the fine shall be 90 per cent of the real sales of the
previous issue; for printed works that are not periodicals or periodicals
which have just entered the market the fine shall be 90 per cent of the
monthly sales of the best selling daily periodical. In any case the fine
shall not be less than 50 million Turkish liras. Editors in charge of such
periodicals shall be punished with half the sentences imposed on their
Article 7. (1) Under reservation of provisions in Articles 3 and 4 and Articles
168, 169, 171, 313, 314 and 315 of the Turkish Penal Code those who found
organizations as specified in Article 1 under any name or who organize and
lead activities in such organisations shall be punished with imprisonment of
between 5 and 10 years and with a fine of between 200 million and 500 million
Turkish liras; those who join these organizations shall be punished with
imprisonment of between 3 and 5 years and with a fine of between 100 million
and 300 million Turkish liras.
(2) Those who assist members of organizations constituted in the manner
described above or make propaganda in connection with such organizations
shall be punished with imprisonment of between 1 and 5 years and with a fine
of between 50 million and 100 million Turkish liras, even if their offence
constitutes a separate crime.
(3) Where assistance is provided to such organisations in the form of
buildings, premises, offices or extensions of associations, foundations,
political parties, professional or workers’ institutions or their affiliates,
or in educational institutions or students’ dormitories or their extensions
the punishments mentioned in paragraph 2 shall be doubled.
(4) In addition, activities of associations, foundations, trade unions and
similar institutions found to have supported terrorism shall be banned and
the institutions may be closed down by a court’s decision. Assets of these
institutions will be confiscated.
(5) If the offence of propaganda in connection with an organization as
mentioned in paragraph 2 is committed by a periodical as defined in Article
3 of the Press Law No. 5680, its publishers shall be punished additionally
with the following amounts of fine: for periodicals issued at less than
monthly intervals the fine shall be 90 per cent of the average real sales for
the previous month; for printed works that are not periodicals or periodicals
that have just entered the market the fine shall be 90 per cent of the
monthly sales of the best selling daily periodical. In any case the fine
shall not be less than 100 million Turkish liras. Editors in charge of such
periodicals shall be punished with half the sentences awarded to publishers
and a sentence of between six months and two years’ imprisonment.
Progaganda against the indivisible unity of the State:
Article 8. (1) Written and oral propaganda and assemblies, meetings and
demonstrations aimed at damaging the indivisible unity of the Turkish
Republic with its territory and nation are forbidden, regardless of
the methods, intentions and ideas behind such activities. Those conducting
such activities shall be punished with a sentence of between 2 and 5 years’
imprisonment and with a fine of between 50 million and 100 million Turkish
(2) If the offence of propaganda as mentioned in the foregoing paragraph
is committed by a periodical as defined in Article 3 of the Press Law No.
5680, its publishers shall be punished additionally by the following amounts
of fine: for periodicals issued at less than monthly intervals the fine shall
be 90 per cent of the average real sales of the previous month; for printed
works that are not periodicals or periodicals that have just entered the
market the fine shall be 90 per cent of the monthly sales of the best selling
daily periodical. In any case the fine shall not be less than 100 million
Turkish liras. Editors in charge of such periodicals shall be punished with
half the sentences awarded to publishers and a sentence of between six months
and two years’ imprisonment.
Article 9. Offences within the scope of this law are to be tried in state
security courts; and for those committing one of these crimes or participat-
ing in these crimes, the provisions of this Law and the Law 2845 on The
Foundation and Criminal Procedures at State Security Courts shall be applied.
Representation by and contacts with a lawyer:
Article 10. In applying this law:
a) the defendant and intervenors may be represented by a maximum of three
b) the defendant in pre-trial detention or convicts may have contact with a
lawyer under the supervision of a detention centre or prison official.
Length of detention:
Article 11. People detained for offences under this law shall be presented
before a judge within 48 hours [of their arrest]; in case of collective
tive crimes, within 15 days excluding the time it takes to bring the suspect
from the place of detention to the nearest court.
Testimonies of interrogators/investigators:
Article 12. Police chiefs and officers interrogating suspects and witnesses
of crimes within the scope of this law or writing reports about the event or
facts may, if necessary, testify in court as witnesses. However, if they are
called to testify, their testimony shall be taken in a closed hearing.
Suspension and commutation of sentences to fines:
Article 13. Sentences imposed under this law cannot be commuted to a fine,
converted to other measures or suspended.
Non-disclosure of the identity of informants:
Article 14. The identity of those providing information about crimes or
criminals within the scope of this law shall not to be disclosed, unless the
informant has given permission or the nature of the information constitutes
a crime by the informant.
Trial without imprisonment:
Article 15. (1) Where chiefs and officers of police and intelligence or other
officials engaged in fighting terrorism are publicly prosecuted for crimes
allegedly committed during the course of their duty, they shall be tried
without being detained.
(2) Where chiefs and officers of police and intelligence or other officials
engaged in fighting terrorism are publicly prosecuted for crimes allegedly
committed during the course of their duty, they shall be represented by a
maximum of three lawyers whose fees shall be paid by the relevant institution
[to which they were attached] regardless of the amount of fees charged by the
(3) Where chiefs and officers of police and intelligence or other officials
engaged in fighting terrorism are alleged to have committed crimes during the
course of their duty, the provisions of the Law on Prosecution of Civil
Servants shall be applied in case of offences involving negligence and
similar failures, except offences of murder or attempted murder.
Execution of sentences
Execution of sentences and holding of pre-trial detainees:
Article 16. (1) The sentences of those convicted under the provisions of this
law shall be executed in special penal institutions built with rooms each
capable of holding between one and three persons.
(2) In such institutions, free visits may not be allowed. Contacts between
the convicts and communication with other convicts may be prevented.
(3) Those convicts who have served at least one third of their sentences
with good conduct and have less than three years to serve before becoming
entitled to conditional release may be transferred to other closed penal
(4) Those held in pre-trial detention for crimes within the scope of this
law shall be kept in detention centres as described in paragraph 1. The
provisions of paragraph 2 shall also apply to pre-trial detainees.
Article 17. (1) Those convicted under this law shall be released
conditionally: after 36 years’ imprisonment if, having been sentenced to
death, their death penalty is not ratified by the Grand National Assembly of
Turkey; after 30 years’ imprisonment if they were sentenced to life
imprisonment; or after they have served three quarters of their terms of
imprisonment in all other cases, if they have served their sentences with
good conduct [and have applied for such release].
(2) Those who may have escaped during pre-trial detention or as convicts,
or may have attempted to escape, or were convicted for insurrection against
the prison administration and who as a disciplinary punishment have been
awarded a sentence of solitary confinement shall not benefit from conditional
release, even if their disciplinary punishment has been lifted.
(3) Convicts under the provisions of this law who commit another crime
under this Law after their sentence has been confirmed shall not benefit from
(4) The provisions of paragraph 1 and 2 of Article 19 and additional
Article 2 of Law 647 on the Execution of Sentences shall not be applied
to such convicts.
Construction of Prisons and Detention Centres:
Article 18. For the construction of prisons, detention centres and custodial
buildings according to Article 16 of this law, the provisions of Article 89
of Law 2886 on Public Tender will be applied.
Article 19. (1) Those, to be specified by the Ministry of the Interior, who
help to apprehend criminals under this law or provide information about their
whereabouts or identity shall be entitled to a financial reward according
to Law 1481 on the Prevention of Certain Crimes against Public Order.
(2) The Ministry of the Interior shall take measures to protect those
receiving a reward.
Measures of Protection:
Article 20. (1) The State shall take necessary protective measures for
officials involved in fighting terrorism or anarchy and officials of the
judiciary, intelligence, administration and military who carry out such
duties, police chiefs and officers, the Director-General and deputy
Director-General for Prisons and Detention Centres, prosecutors and directors
of prisons and detention centres for the detention of terrorists, judges and
prosecutors of state security courts and others performing such duties,
those who may become or have been made targets for terrorist organizations,
and witnesses and informants who assist in the exposure of such crimes.
(2) Such protective measures shall include plastic surgery to change
physical appearance, alteration of registration records, driving licences,
matrimonial certificates, degrees and other documents, arrangement of
military service, rights of movable and immovable property, and protection of
social security and other rights.
(3) In applying these measures the Minister of the Interior and other
institutions involved shall be bound by all rules of secrecy.
(4) The rules for protective measures shall be specified in guidelines to
be prepared by the Prime Minister’s Office.
(5) Those mentioned above are entitled to use arms in order to protect
themselves, their spouses and children against attacks by terrorists, even if
they have left service.
Pension for invalids and support for widows and orphans:
Article 21. Where an official is injured, left disabled, dies or is killed as
a result of being exposed to terrorist activities in the course of his duty
at home or abroad, even if he has [subsequently left service], the provisions
of Law 2330 on Monetary Compensation and Pension shall be applied. In
(a) The total of the pension for invalids, or the spouse and orphans of
those killed and entitled to a pension, may not be less than the pension of
their colleagues on duty; if pensioners are killed the monthly payment for
their spouse and orphans may not be less than their monthly pension according
ing to the relevant law. In case of deficiency the difference shall be paid
by the social security institutions and reimbursed by the Treasury.
(b) Those left invalid while benefitting from public accommodation at home
or abroad, and the spouse and orphans of those killed and entitled to a
pension (except those living in houses specially provided under the Law of
Public Housing, shall continue to benefit from public accommodation for
one year. Those who after that year leave such public housing and those not
benefitting from public accommodation and those living in specially
provided houses shall on application be paid rent by the State for
accomodation within the country for a period of 10 years. Those living in
specially provided accomodation abroad shall on application be paid the rent
payable abroad for one year by the State.
(c) As regards benefiting from accommodation loans, the provisions of
additional Article 9 of Law 2559 on the Duties and Competence of
the Police shall be applied; those provisions shall also be applicable to
invalids or their spouses and, where their partners are not alive or have
re-married, to their children.
(d) Invalids, spouses and the minor children of those killed in
circumstances mentioned above shall be entitled to travel free of charge on
State Railroads, City Maritime Lines and on public transport.
If the spouses or orphans cease to be entitled to a pension under the
provisions of the laws on social security, they shall not be entitled to
any of the rights provided in this Article.
Support for other people suffering losses from terrorism:
Article 22. Citizens who are not civil servants, but suffer from terrorist
activities with loss of life or property shall get special support from the
Social Welfare and Solidarity Fund. The scope and amount of the support
will be determined by the local authorities administering the Fund.
Temporary Article 1. (1) In connection with crimes committed until 8 April
(a) Death sentences shall not be executed. Convicts covered by this
provision shall be required to serve 10 years of the sentences provided for
in Article 19 of Law 647 on the Execution of Sentences.
(b) Convicts sentenced to life imprisonment shall have to serve 8 years of
(c) All others sentenced to punishments restricting personal liberty will
have to serve one fifth of their sentences.
(2) After serving the abovementioned terms they shall be conditionally
released regardless of good conduct and without having to apply for such
(3) The time spent in pre-trial detention shall be included in calculating
the abovementioned periods.
(4) The provisions relating to reduction of sentences in additional
Article 2 of Law 647 on the Execution of Sentences shall not be applied
to such convicts.
Temporary Article 2. (1) In connection with suspects held in pre-trial
detention for alleged crimes committed until 8 April 1991, the minimum limits
of the expected sentence provided in the relevant law shall be considered:
(a) at the stage of preparatory investigations, according to the nature of
the crime taken as the basis of the indictment;
(b) at the stage of final investigations, according to the crime mentioned
in the indictment or according to the changed nature of the crime;
and if the pre-trial detainee has been imprisoned for a period specified
in temporary Article 1, the detainee shall be released within 30 days of this
law entering into force,
(i) before a public case was started by the prosecution;
(ii) if a public case is continuing by the competent court;
(iii) if a case is pending at the appeal or military appeal court [after
being referred there] by the competent court or the chief prosecutor.
(2) Defendants awaiting a public case or against whom a public case was
started earlier shall be tried. In case the defendant does not appear in
court, the testimonies made to the prosecutor or before a judge shall be
taken as sufficient. Following a final verdict at the end of the trial,
the provisions of conditional release according to temporary Article 1 of
this Law shall be applied.
Temporary Article 3. Those who, following the publication of this law, are
entitled to benefit from the provisions of temporary Article 1, but have
received disciplinary punishment on account of acts prejudicial to prison
discipline, shall not benefit from the provisions of temporary Article 1
until their disciplinary punishment is lifted according to the Statute on
Administration of Penal Institutions and the Execution of Sentences.
Temporary Article 4. (1) Those who until 8 April 1991:
(a) killed or attempted to kill civil servants or officials on duty by
acts defined in this law as terrorist acts, even if they have subsequently
abandoned their status [sic], and those who participated in such offences;
(b) committed offences under Articles 125, 146 (except the last paragraph),
403, 404(1), 405, 406, 407, 414, 416 (1) and 418 of the Turkish Penal Code,
(c) violated provisions of the third chapter in Part Two of the
Turkish Penal Code, entitled “Crimes against the Administration of the
State”, or, in contravention of the Banking Law, unjustly and
irregularly received moneys from banks, or, in violation of Law
1918 on the Prevention and Prosecution of Smuggling, obtained an advantage,
or conducted irregular, fraudulent or fictitious transactions of export,
import or investment incentives and by doing so obtained unjust
deduction of taxes, premiums, loans, difference of interest or similar
advantages from public sources and those participating in such offences,
regardless of whether or not the time limit for prosecution against such
offence has passed, unless they have repaid the unjust and irregular
advantage obtained by them,
(d) committed offences under Articles 55, 56, 57, 58 and 59 of
the Military Criminal Code,
shall not benefit from the provisions of Temporary Article 1. However, death
penalties imposed for offences mentioned in this Article shall not be
executed. Such convicts shall be released conditionally regardless of good
conduct and without the need for a special application, as follows: after
20 years if they were sentenced to death; after 15 years if they were
sentenced to life imprisonment; and after they have served one third of
their sentences in all other cases.
(2) The time spent in pre-trial detention shall be included in
calculating the abovementioned periods.
(3) The reducing provisions of Additional Article 2 of Law 647 on the
Execution of Sentences shall not be applied to such convicts.
(4) The provisions of Temporary Article 2 (except for the reference in the
last paragraph to Temporary Article (1) and Article 3 of this Law shall also
be applied to such convicts.
Temporary Article 5. In order that those who, according to chapter (g) of
Article 25 of Law 403 on Turkish Citizenship, have lost their Turkish
citizenship can benefit from the temporary provisions of this Law, there
shall be no condition imposed on their re-entry into the country within two
years from the coming into force of this law and such persons shall not
be stopped at the border when re-entering.
Temporary Article 6. Until special facilities for penal institutions
have been built, pre-trial detainees and those convicted of terorist crimes
shall be kept in other penal institutions.
Temporary Article 7. The provisions of Article 17 of this law shall be
applied to those who commit crimes under this law after it has entered into
Temporary Article 8. The provisions of Article 21 of this law shall be
applied from the beginning of the first day of the month following the
entering into force of the law for all persons included in this law since
1 January 1968.
Temporary Article 9. The movable and immovable property and incomes from
such property belonging to confederations and trade unions affiliated
to confederations whose administration was handed over to an inspector by a
court order prior to this law entering into force and based on the provisions
[similar to] Article 23 of this law, as well as all their monetary
possessions [sic] shall, according to Article 46 of Law 2821 on Trade
Unions, be handed over to the competent institution [for investment]; the
movable and immovable property of associations and foundations will be handed
over to the Treasury.
Article 23. [The following laws:]
(a) Law 2 on High Treason;
(b) Law 6187 on the Protection of Freedom of Conscience and Meetings;
(c) Articles 140, 141, 142 and 163 of the Turkish Penal Code No. 765;
(d) Article 5, chapter 7 and 8 and Article 6, chapter 2 of Law 2908 on
are hereby repealed.
Entry into force:
Article 24. This Law shall enter into force on the date of its publication.
Article 25. This Law shall be implemented by the Council of Ministers.