Military Service Procedures
Ever since foreigners have started to obtain Turkish citizenship, the question of rights and duties has risen. The entitlement of nationality in Turkey is closely related to military services for young men. However, there is a Military Service Postponement and Exemption Fee in Turkey that can entitle new Turkish citizens to get an exemption from military duty.
The Turkish Military Service Act No. 1111 states in Article 2 that all foreigners and refugees who get Turkish citizenship must be classified as Turkish locals of the same age. The age of new Turkish citizens is determined on the day they get their citizenship. Military service should be performed similarly to the soldiers and Turkish officers of the same age.
The same law also states that those individuals who receive Turkish citizenship get exemption from military services if the first batch of soldiers of similar age is demobilized. On the other hand, individuals who are underage can perform military service in Turkey without any regard to their status of service from the countries that they belong to.
The demobilization of the first batch of Turkish soldiers is directly linked to the servicing duty of the same age of newly acquired Turkish citizens.
As published in the Official Gazette in February 2014, the age limit for military service is 21 years in Turkey. Men who turn 21 years of will be automatically called to serve in the Turkish military every year in February. Keeping this in mind, all men who acquire Turkish citizenship at the age of 22 years or more will be exempted from entering the military services.
Additionally, any person who gets Turkish citizenship as a result of marriage will also be exempted from military service given that he gets married after the age of 22 years. All immigrants will be determined for their service in the Turkish military if they enter the territory before turning 22. For example, if a man enters Turkey at the age of 20 and gets his citizenship at the age of 30, he is obliged to serve in the military. The reason being that he has been in living in Turkey before he turned 22 years old.
Exemption from Turkish Military
Citizens belonging to one of the Republics of Turkey can show a document that proves they have served in their own country to get an exemption. The nationals who can get an exemption are Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, South Cyprus, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tatarstan, Kyrgyz Autonomous Republic, East Turkistan – Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, Autonomous Region of Tatar, and the Bashkortostan Autonomous Republic. Citizens can also get an exemption if they belong to nations of Turkish descent like Western Thrace, Bulgaria and Ahsika.
Documents Required for Military Duty Postponement
The following documents can help the citizens to get a military duty postponement.
- Original Turkish passport and foreign passport if it is still valid.
- Seaman Wallet.
- Seaman qualification certificate.
- Original birth certificate.
- Two photographs, which should have been taken within the last three months.
- A contract of employment. This is applicable to those working on ships and the contract should be issued by the owner of the ship. This also needs to be endorsed by the foreign country operating the ship with approval of authorities from the country the ship belongs to.
- An endorsement letter needs to be approved by the competent authorities of the country that the ship belongs to.
- A list of the crew approved by the authorities of the ship’s mooring point.
- A certificate of registration.
- Contact details of the company owning the ship and the companies that equip and operates it.