Turkey’s main opposition party organised dozens of rallies across the country on Monday to protest the ongoing state of emergency, in place since July 2016, which grants the government sweeping powers.
More than 50,000 people are jailed under state-of-emergency decrees and more than 150,000 people have lost their jobs.
Decrees are issued in place of laws on a range of matters, from national security to privatising sugar factories.
The centre-left People’s Republican Party (CHP) said it organised protests in each of the country’s 81 provinces, ahead of a vote Wednesday in parliament on extending the state-of-emergency by another three-months, bringing it to a full two-years.
The government says the state of emergency is needed to combat terrorism, in particular from the movement of Fethullah Gulen, a U.S.-based cleric, who Ankara blames for organising a failed military coup in 2016.
The CHP and other government critics say emergency rule is eroding democracy and the rule of law and being applied unfairly.
The protests come on the first anniversary of a referendum on vastly expanding the powers of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
The vote narrowly passed, though the opposition alleged there were irregularities.
Protesters held up signs saying “no to one man” and against emergency rule. One of the main slogans chanted: “Rights, Law and Justice.”