Treaties, States Parties and Commentaries
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Declarations made upon ratification on 04.05.2004 (Original: English):
“I. The Republic of Turkey declares that it will implement the provisions of the existing Optional Protocol only to the States Parties which it recognizes and with which it has diplomatic relations.

II. 1. The Republic of Turkey declares, in accordance with Article 3 (2) of the Optional Protocol, that military service is compulsory in Turkey, however Turkish citizens are not subjected to compulsory military service before reaching the legal age of maturity. In accordance with the Turkish Military Code, military service begins on 1st January of the twentieth age; in cases of mobilisation and state of emergency, individuals who are liable to military service may be recruited at the age of 19.

There is no voluntary recruitment in Turkey.

However, Article 11 of the Military Code envisages a voluntary recruitment for navy and gendarmerie classes and non-commissioned officers at a minimum age of 18. Nevertheless, this article, which is in compliance with the age regulation of the Optional Protocol, is not applied in practice.
Students of military schools, who are exempted from the Optional Protocol according to Article 3 (5) of this protocol, are not subjected to compulsory military service. Under the Turkish legal system, such students are not considered as “soldiers” and are not held liable for “military service”.

2. Admittance to the military high schools and preparatory non-commissioned officer schools is on a voluntary basis, depending on success in the entrance examinations and with the consent of parents or legal guardians. Students who have completed their primary school education and enrolled into such schools at a minimum age of 15 can quit them at any time if they so wish.

III. The Republic of Turkey declares with regard to Article 3 (5) of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict that the reservation it made to Article 29 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which is referred to in the said paragraph of the Optional Protocol, fully retains its validity.”

The Protocol will enter into force for Turkey on 4 June 2004 in accordance with its article 10 (2) which reads as follows:
"For each State ratifying the present Protocol or acceding to it after its entry into force, the present Protocol shall enter into force one month after the date of the deposit of its own instrument of ratification or accession."