THE Turkish Parliament has been very reluctant to give the government of Yildirim Akbulut full authority to get involved in a military action in the Gulf. The Turkish government had asked to hand over power to it to ``declare war, send troops abroad, and allow foreign troops to be stationed on Turkish soil.''
This would have allowed the government to participate in a multinational force in the Gulf or to let the United States use the base facilities in Turkey for a military intervention in the region.
During the debate in Parliament, the opposition parties strongly opposed the government's request.
The ruling Motherland Party was split. Several of its parliamentarians said that this would provoke the Arabs' anger and would also create the danger of dragging the country into a military confrontation in the Middle East.
The government had then to revise its proposal and add a sentence which said ``only in case Turkey was attacked.''
The bill was passed with 216 votes against 151.
Thus, the Akbulut government has no power to decide to send troops to the multinational force or to allow the US to utilize the bases in Turkey. It must refer the matter to the Parliament first, and get its approval.