The Anatomy Of The Dual State in Turkey

Contemporary Turkey is marked by two parallel states and legal systems. One is the constitutional state that is supposed to be western-oriented and democratic, based on the rule of law, and loyal to Turkey’s commitments to various transnational organizations, such as the CoE and the EU. The other one is a “prerogative state” that has eliminated checks and balances and legal mechanisms to restrain its power. Turkish dual state is based on both of these parallel states, and it has arisen as an excellent tool for authoritarian, pragmatic and populist policies of the AKP. This paper will draw attention to the similarities of the recent political and constitutional transformations in Turkey and the German legal and political order of the 1930s. It will discuss to what extent the concept of “dual state” can be employed in explaining the present political situation in Turkey. In doing so, it also aims at unveiling the major characteristics of the contemporary authoritarianism.