Turkey’s paid exemption from military service system begins
Summary: Will the new paid military service waiver program be Turkey’s last?
Turkey’s Minister of National Defense Hulusi Akar discussed with state-run Anadolu Agency Turkish Minister of National Defense Hulusi Akar recently discussed the new paid conscription program colloquially known as “bedelli askerlik,” which roughly translates as “paid military service,” with the state-run Anadolu Agency. A law passed in July granted a one-time opportunity for men to complete their compulsory military service in just 21 days if they pay 15,000 Turkish liras (about $2,840) before Nov. 3.
Akar said 634,415 men had applied for the program, in which 37 classes will serve through February 2020. The program has processed three classes since August.
But “pay to serve less time” schemes, of which five have been implemented from 1987 until 2014, are controversial in Turkey. The programs worsen the divide among the country’s “haves” and “have nots” and undermine unit morale.
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