The rector of Istanbul-based University of Health Sciences (SBÜ) has filed a criminal complaint against the metropolitan municipality of the Mediterreanean Mersin province, which is run by the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP).
Prof. Dr. Cevdet Erdöl told state-run Anadolu Agency on Jan. 13 that the Mersin Metropolitan Municipality sent New Year's gift packages with alcoholic beverages in them to its district mayors and councilors, violating Law No. 4250 which forbids the sale or promotion of alcoholic beverages.
“Firstly, this is a crime by the law. Because the Law No. 4250 forbids people to give away alcohol products as a gift or sample or sell them,” Erdöl said.
Ever since it came to power in 2002, the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has been actively restricting alcohol sales and advertisements.
In 2013, the AKP government amended the Law. No. 4250 on Alcohol and Alcoholic Beverages and extended the scope of the ban on alcohol advertisement in Turkey.
The new regulations also required a distance of at least 100 meters between premises selling alcohol and places of worship or education, though it excludes tourist premises.