Expansion of presidential power: Erdogan receives sole authority over mobilization decisions

Expansion of presidential power: Erdogan receives sole authority over mobilization decisions

The Turkish government has passed a new martial law and mobilization decree that significantly expands the powers of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. According to this, the president can now declare national mobilization in the event of war or uprising without parliamentary approval.

Sole decision-making authority:

The previous regulation stipulated that the cabinet had to make this decision. With the new decree, this power is transferred entirely to the president. This further cements Turkey’s executive presidential system and concentrates even more power in the hands of Erdogan.

Mobilization in an emergency:

The decree defines in detail the conditions for declaring national mobilization. This can occur, among other things, in the event of a war against Turkey, an uprising against the republic or a threat to the country’s territorial integrity.

Recourse to dismissed civil servants:

A notable innovation is the possibility of using dismissed civil servants, including former soldiers, as replacements in the event of a national emergency. This regulation also applies to people who were dismissed after the failed coup attempt in 2016 for links to terrorist organizations or convictions by military or ordinary courts.

Expansion of the executive presidential system:

The new regulation is part of a series of measures that have strengthened the power of the president since the introduction of the executive presidential system in 2017. Critics see this as an erosion of democracy and a weakening of parliamentary control.


The new martial law and mobilization regulation marks another step towards the concentration of power in the hands of President Erdogan. The regulation grants the president extensive powers while limiting the role of parliament. This has both domestic and foreign policy implications that observers are watching with concern.

Additional points:

  • The decree does not contain any specific guidelines for the control and abuse of the president’s new powers.
  • It is unclear how the mobilization will be carried out in detail and what precautions will be taken to protect civilians.
  • The decree could lead to tensions with Erdogan’s domestic opponents and international concerns about the rule of law and democratic values in Turkey.


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