Erdoğan, top court chair accompany Diyanet head during prayer at opening ceremony

Erdoğan and Court of Cassation chair Mehmet Akarca accompanied Diyanet head Ali Erbaş during a ceremony marking the opening of a new service building for the court and the start of the 2021-2022 judicial year. Akarca was seen wearing his tabard while praying.

Duvar English

A new service building of the Court of Cassation, Turkey's high court of appeals, was opened during a ceremony on Sept. 1 which saw the attendance of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

The even also marked the start of the 2011-2022 judiciary year. 

The head of Turkey's top religious body Diyanet, Ali Erbaş, also attended the ceremony, during which he held a sermon praising the new building of the court.

“Dear Allah, we have opened our hands to you in the opening of this magnificent building of the Court of Cassation, may this magnificent work be fortuitous for our people,” Erbaş said in his prayer.

Erbaş later recited one passage from the Quaran, the chapter of Al-Fatiha.

Court of Cassation head Mehmet Akarca attended the prayers with his tabard on.

During the ceremony, Erdoğan also said that his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) plans to present the new constitution to the public in the first months of 2022.

"In the new judicial year, we'll accelerate our judicial reform efforts that will relieve both our justiciary organization and our nation," Erdoğan said.

"Our friends will bring this new package to Parliament's agenda as soon as possible," he added.

Akarca also addressed the attendees at the event, saying that the Court of Cassation supports the drafting of the new constitution.

"We also support this attempt. High standards should be targeted in the issues with regards to the state of law and judiciary independence," Akarca said. 

In February, Erdoğan had spoken of the need to draft a new and “civilian” constitution for Turkey. He had said that the new constitution aimed to update the "understanding of basic rights and freedoms," without elaborating.