Law of the Supreme Constitutional Court 2014 – Al-Mahkamah al-Dustūrīyah al-‘Ulyā (Syria)

Based on the provisions of the Constitution and what was approved by the People’s Assembly in its session held on 6/13/1435 AH corresponding to 4/13/2014.

المحكمة الدستورية العليا

Issues the following:

The Law of the Supreme Constitutional Court

Chapter One

Formation of the Court

Article 1 – The Supreme Constitutional Court is an independent judicial body in the Syrian Arab Republic, located in the city of Damascus.
Article 2 – In the context of applying the provisions of this law, the word “court” means the Supreme Constitutional Court, and by “court member” the president and members of the court, unless there is a contrary text.

Article 3 –
a- The court is composed of eleven members, one of whom is president, named by the President of the Republic by decree, for a period of four years, subject to renewal. The calculation of the period starts from the date of the member taking the constitutional oath.
b- The court exercises its jurisdiction in the presence of its president and members, and its convening is legal in the presence of the majority of its members.
C- The court issues its decisions by a majority vote of those present.
d- When the position of the president is vacant, absent, or there is an impediment to him, he takes the place of the most senior and the most senior member of the court in all his competencies, and in the event of equality, the oldest.
e- The seniority of the members is determined according to the lack of years of service or practice in the entity in which he was working before his appointment to the court, and in the event of equality, the oldest shall be presented.
Article 4 –
Anyone who is appointed as a member of the court is required to meet the following conditions:
A – He enjoys Syrian Arab nationality, and does not hold another nationality.
b- He must be over forty years old and not more than seventy-two.
C- Holder of a law degree from a Syrian university or its equivalent.
d- He has practiced judicial work, law, or teaching in law faculties for a period of no less than fifteen years.

Article 5 – It is not permissible to name members of the court who are related by kinship or affinity, up to the fourth degree.
Article 6 – It is not permissible to be called members of the court and between the ministry, membership of the People’s Assembly, membership of local administrative boards, or any other profession or job except for teaching at the university.
Article 7 – The President of the Court and its members shall take the following oath before the President of the Republic and in the presence of the Speaker of the People’s Assembly, before assuming their duties:
“I swear by Almighty God to respect the country’s constitution and laws and to perform my duty with impartiality and honesty.”

Chapter Two

The General Assembly of the Court

Article 8 – The General Assembly of the Court shall consist of all its members.
Article 9 – The General Assembly shall do the following:

a- Considering issues related to the court’s system and its internal affairs, the distribution of work among its members and employees, and all matters related to them in accordance with the provisions of its internal system.
b- Looking into issues related to the accountability, investigation and dismissal of its members.
C- Preparing and approving the court’s draft budget.
d- Preparing and issuing regulations related to its work.
E- Delegating the president of the court or a number of its members to do some of what falls within its jurisdiction.
Article 10 –
A – The general assembly of the court meets at the invitation of the president of the court or at the request of three of its members, and its meeting is not valid unless attended by the majority of its members
.
C- The general assembly issues its decisions by an absolute majority of the votes of those present, and in the event of an equality of votes, the side in which the chairman’s vote shall prevail.
D- Minutes of the work of the general assembly shall be recorded in a register signed by its chairman.

Chapter III

Competences of the Court

Article 11 – The Supreme Constitutional Court has jurisdiction over the following:

A- Oversight of the constitutionality of laws, legislative decrees, bylaws, and regulations.
b- Expressing an opinion on the constitutionality of draft laws and legislative decrees, and the legality of draft decrees based on a request from the President of the Republic.
C- Expressing an opinion on the constitutionality of proposed laws based on a request from the Speaker of the People’s Assembly.
d- Supervising the election of the President of the Republic and organizing the relevant procedures.
e- Considering and deciding on appeals relating to the validity of the election of members of the People’s Assembly.
F- Examining and deciding on appeals regarding the validity of the election of members of the People’s Assembly.
G- Prosecuting the President of the Republic in case of high treason.
H- Deciding on defenses referred by the courts in the course of challenging rulings on the unconstitutionality of a legal text.
i- Interpreting the provisions of the constitution at the request of the President of the Republic, the Speaker of the People’s Assembly or the Prime Minister.
J- Considering the President of the Republic’s loss of one of the conditions for candidacy and deciding on it.
K- Considering the loss of a member of the People’s Assembly to one of the conditions for candidacy and deciding on it.

Chapter Four

Procedures

Section One

Procedures relating to the constitutionality of laws, legislative decrees, regulations, and regulations

Article 12 – The Court shall supervise the constitutionality of laws according to the following:

A- If the President of the Republic or one-fifth of the People’s Assembly members object to the constitutionality of a law before it is issued, its issuance shall be suspended as soon as the objection is registered in a special register with the Court’s office.
b- The court shall decide on the objection within a period of fifteen days from the date of its registration.
c- If the law has the capacity of urgency, the court must decide on the objection within seven days from the date of its registration with it.
d- The court shall communicate its decision to the President of the Republic and the Speaker of the People’s Assembly within three days at most following the date of its issuance.

Article 13 – The Court shall supervise the constitutionality of a legislative decree according to the following:

A- If five members of the People’s Assembly object to the constitutionality of a legislative decree within fifteen days following the date of its presentation to the Assembly, the objection shall be recorded in a special register at the Court’s office.
b- The court shall decide on the objection within a period of fifteen days from the date of its registration.
C – The court shall communicate its decision to the President of the Republic and the Speaker of the People’s Assembly within three days at most following the date of its issuance.

Article 14 – The Court shall supervise the constitutionality of regulations or regulations according to the following:
A- If five members of the People’s Assembly object to the constitutionality of regulations or regulations within fifteen days following the date of their publication in the Official Gazette, the objection shall be recorded in a special register at the Court’s office.
b- The court shall decide on the objection within a period of fifteen days from the date of its registration.
C – The court shall communicate its decision to the President of the Republic and the Speaker of the People’s Assembly within three days at most following the date of its issuance.
Article 15 –
If the court decides to violate the law, the legislative decree, the regulation, or the system of the constitution, whatever contradicts the provisions of the constitution shall be considered null and void with a retroactive effect and no effect. These provisions shall be notified to all public authorities in the state and published in the Official Gazette.

Section Two

Expressing an opinion on the constitutionality of draft laws and legislative decrees and the legality of draft decrees at the request of the President of the Republic

Article 16 – The Court shall express its opinion on the constitutionality of draft laws and legislative decrees and the legality of draft decrees at the request of the President of the Republic as follows:

A- The President of the Republic may refer a draft The law or draft legislative decree to the court to express an opinion on the compatibility of the draft law or draft legislative decree with the provisions of the Constitution, or about the compatibility of the draft decree with the laws in force.
B- The court shall give its reasoned opinion within fifteen days from the date of receiving the request for opinion, and within seven days in case of urgency.
C- The court communicates its opinion to the Speaker of the People’s Assembly without publication.

Section Three

Expressing an opinion on the constitutionality of law proposals at the request of the People’s Assembly Speaker

Article 17 – The court shall express its opinion on the constitutionality of proposals for laws based on the request of the Speaker of the People’s Assembly, according to the following:
A- The Speaker of the People’s Assembly may refer the draft law proposal to the court to express an opinion on the extent Compliance with the provisions of the Constitution.
B – The court shall give its reasoned opinion within fifteen days from the date of receiving the request for opinion, and within seven days in case of urgency.
C – The court communicates its opinion to the Speaker of the People’s Assembly without publication.

Section IV

Procedures related to the supervision of the election of the President of the Republic

Article 18 –
A candidate for the position of President of the Republic must fulfill the following conditions:
A – He must be over forty years of age.
b- To have Syrian Arab nationality by birth, from parents who enjoy Syrian Arab nationality by birth.
c- That he enjoys his civil and political rights and has not been convicted of a heinous crime, even if he has been rehabilitated.
d- He should not be married to a non-Syrian.
c- He must have resided in the Syrian Arab Republic for a period of no less than ten years of continuous permanent residence when submitting the candidacy application.
H- He shall not hold any nationality other than that of the Syrian Arab Republic.
g- Not to be deprived of the right to vote.

Article 19 – The Speaker of the People’s Assembly shall call for the election of the President of the Republic before the end of the term of the incumbent president, within a period of no less than sixty and not more than ninety days, and the invitation must include the date of the election date.
Article 20 – The application for candidacy for the election of the President of the Republic shall be submitted by the candidate himself or his legal representative according to the form prepared by the court, and recorded in a special register with it according to the order in which it was received, within a period of ten days following the date of the announcement of the call for elections.

Article 21 – The following documents shall be attached to the candidacy application:

A- A civil record for the candidate.
B – A civil registration for the candidate’s parents.
C – A civil record for the candidate’s wife.
d- Summary of the criminal record.
C – A residence document that proves the candidate’s residence in the Syrian Arab Republic for a period of ten continuous and permanent years.
H – A written statement from the candidate stating that he has not acquired any nationality other than the nationality of the Syrian Arab Republic.
g- A statement of the candidate’s residence address and the means of contacting him.

Article 22 –
A – The court shall study the legality of nomination applications after receiving the endorsements of members of the People’s Assembly, and shall decide on them within five days following the period specified for their registration at most.
B – The application for candidacy shall not be accepted unless the candidacy applicant obtains written support for his candidacy from at least thirty-five members of the People’s Assembly, and none of these members may support more than one candidate for the presidency.
Article 23 –
The court announces the names of those it decided to accept their candidacy.
Article 24
A- A person whose candidacy application was rejected by the court has the right to file a grievance against this decision within three days from the date of his application being rejected.
b- The court will decide on this grievance within three days following its submission with a final decision.
Article 25
a- Court members are prohibited from advertising, publicizing or leaking the content of written support letters, and these books are kept with the President of the Supreme Constitutional Court.
b- An appellant whose candidacy application was rejected because he did not obtain the legally required number of written letters of support is excluded from the previous ban, as he has the right to see the names of the members of the People’s Assembly who supported him only, provided that he maintains the confidentiality of what he has seen.
Article 26 –
The court prepares a final list of candidates, and announces this list by publication in the Official Gazette and in two daily newspapers, at least fifteen days prior to the day set for polling.
Article 27 –
If the conditions required for candidacy are not met by any of the candidates, or they are met by only one candidate, the court must inform the Speaker of the People’s Assembly within four days from the date of deciding on the candidacy applications, and within seven days at most in the event of a grievance, so that the nomination window can be opened again in accordance with the same conditions and legal periods .
Article 28 –
The court supervises the work of the Supreme Judicial Committee for Election, sub-committees and committees of electoral centers in relation to the election of the President of the Republic in accordance with the provisions of the General Elections Law.

Article 29 –

A – The Supreme Judicial Committee shall submit the results of the presidential elections to the court.
B – If the final results include any candidate obtaining an absolute majority of the votes of those who participated in the elections, the candidate shall be considered the winner of the position of President of the Republic, and it shall be announced by the Speaker of the People’s Assembly.
C- If the results include that no candidate has obtained an absolute majority of the votes of those who participated in the elections, the president of the court shall announce the re-election within two weeks between the two candidates who obtained the largest number of votes and the voters who cast their votes.
D- The candidate who obtains the largest number of votes in the re-election is considered the winner of the position of President of the Republic, and the results are announced by the Speaker of the People’s Assembly.
Article 30 –
Every candidate for the presidential elections must submit a final account of his electoral campaign revenues and expenses to the court within a period not exceeding thirty days from the date of announcing the final results of the elections.


Section Five

Procedures related to the validity of the election of the President of the Republic

Article 31 – The Court shall decide on appeals regarding the validity of the election of the President of the Republic according to the following:
a- The appeal shall be submitted by the candidate who did not win to the court within three days from the date of announcing the election results, and the appeal shall be entered in a special register.
B – The appeal must be submitted by a qualified lawyer.
C- The appeal must be accompanied by documents and evidence that prove the seriousness of the claim.
D- The court has the right to contact the authorities concerned with the electoral process to obtain the necessary data, papers or minutes related to the elections.
e- The court issues its judgment within seven days from the end of the period for submitting appeals, and its decision is final.
Article 32 –
If the appeal is proven to be correct, the court will decide to annul the polling in the contested centers, and the polling will be repeated in those centers, and the re-election is limited to those who have previously voted in it.

Sixth branch

Procedures related to the validity of the People’s Assembly elections

Article 33 – The court shall decide on appeals to the elections of members of the People’s Assembly according to the following:
A- The appeal shall be submitted by the candidate who did not win to the court within three days from the date of announcing the election results, and the appeal shall be entered in a special register.
B – The appeal must be submitted by a qualified lawyer.
C- The appeal shall be submitted against the winning members of the same category to which the appellant belongs, and in the same department for which he submitted his candidacy.
d- The appeal must be accompanied by documents and evidence that prove the seriousness of the claim.
e- The court has the right to contact the parties concerned with the electoral process to obtain the necessary data, papers or minutes related to the elections.
f- The court issues its judgment within seven days from the end of the period for submitting appeals, and its decision is final.

Article 34 – If the court proves the validity of the appeal that would affect the final election result, it shall rescind the membership of the challenger.

Section VII

Procedures related to the trial of the President of the Republic


Article 35 – The court, in its general assembly, is competent to try the President of the Republic if he is accused of high treason.
Article 36 – An indictment decision is issued by the President of the Republic by the People’s Assembly by a two-thirds majority of its members, and it is sent by the Speaker of the People’s Assembly to the President of the Republic and the Court on the day following its issuance.
Article 37
A- The court shall decide on the validity of the indictment request within thirty days following the date on which it was notified of the indictment.
B – If the court is found guilty of the president, it issues its ruling unanimously or by the majority with the penalty of removal from office.

Section Eight

Decision on defenses referred by the courts in the course of challenging rulings on the unconstitutionality of a legal text

Article 38 –
A- The court decides on the pleas referred to it by the courts in the course of challenging rulings on the unconstitutionality of a legal text, legislative decree, or regulation within thirty days from the date of its entry with it in a special register.
B – If the court decides that the text whose constitutionality is contested is unconstitutional, it is considered null from the date of its decision, and this decision is notified to all public authorities in the state and is published in the Official Gazette.
Article 39 – The motion referred to the court shall require the following:
A- It must be serious
B- It must be necessary for the settlement of the dispute

Article 40- The referral decision must include the legal text contested as unconstitutional, the constitutional text allegedly violating it and the aspects of the violation.

Section IX

Interpretation of the provisions of the Constitution at the request of the President of the Republic , the Speaker of the People’s Assembly or the Prime Minister

Article 41 – The President of the Republic, the Speaker of the People’s Assembly, or the Prime Minister may request the court to interpret any provision of the constitution by virtue of a request addressed to the court and recorded in a special register.
Article 42 – The court shall express its interpretation within fifteen days from the date of receiving the request for interpretation, and within seven days in case of urgency.

Section Ten

Considering and Deciding on the President of the Republic’s Loss of One of the Conditions of Candidacy

Article 43 – The decision to suggest the President of the Republic loses one of the nomination conditions is issued by the People’s Assembly by a two-thirds majority of its members if the President of the Republic has acquired any nationality other than the nationality of the Syrian Arab Republic or if he marries a non-Syrian, and is sent By the Speaker of the People’s Assembly to the President of the Republic and the Court on the day following its issuance.

Article 44 –
A – The court shall decide on the validity of the proposal within the five days following to inform it of the council’s decision.
B – If the court proves the validity of the proposal, it issues its ruling unanimously or by the majority regarding the vacancy of the position.

Section Eleven

Considering and Deciding on the Loss of a Member of the People’s Assembly to one of the Conditions of Candidacy

Article 45 – The decision to propose the loss of a member of the People’s Assembly for one of the nomination conditions is issued by the People’s Assembly in accordance with its bylaw, and is sent by the Speaker of the People’s Assembly to the court on the day following its issuance.
Article 46 – A – The court shall decide on the validity of the proposal within the five days following it to be informed of the council’s decision.
B – If the court proves the validity of the proposal, it issues its ruling unanimously or by the majority regarding the vacancy of the membership.


Chapter Five

Issuance of Judgments

Article 47-Court judgments are issued in the name of the people in Syria
Article 48-Court judgments are final and not subject to appeal.

Article 49 – A- Court rulings and decisions are binding on all state authorities.
B- The judgments and decisions referred to in the previous paragraph shall be published in the Official Gazette without fees within fifteen days at most from the date of their issuance.
C- A ruling that a law, legislative decree or regulation is unconstitutional results in its inadmissibility from the day following its publication.
d- If the ruling of unconstitutionality is related to a penal text, the judgments of conviction based on that text shall be considered as if they were not, and the head of the court shall inform the Public Prosecutor of the judgment as soon as it is pronounced in order to implement its requirements.

Chapter Six

Rights, Duties and Immunities of Members

Article 50 – A court member is not subject to dismissal except in the cases stipulated in this law.
Article 51
A- A member of the court shall submit his resignation from his position to the President of the Republic for a decision.
B – If the resignation is rejected, the court member must continue in his position.
C- Upon acceptance of the resignation, the rights of the resigning court member shall be liquidated in accordance with the provisions of the court’s internal system.
Article 52 – The general assembly of the court may dismiss a court member by a reasoned decision in the following cases:
a- If he loses the conditions required by his position.
b- If a court member is imputed to a matter that would prejudice confidence or prestige, or if he seriously breached the duties or requirements of his job.
Article 53
a- The General Assembly shall meet to consider the accountability of one of its members.
B – If the commission decides – after inviting the member to hear his statements – that there is a reason to proceed with the accountability procedures, it delegates one of its members to investigate, and the member referred to the investigation is considered to be on inevitable leave with full salary from the date of its decision.
C- After the investigation is over, the investigation is presented to the general assembly convened by a disciplinary court, with the exception of its members who participated in the investigation, to issue – after hearing the member’s defense – its verdict of innocence or dismissal of the member, and the judgment is final and not subject to appeal.
d- The court’s decision to dismiss the member is notified to the President of the Republic.

Article 54 – The President of the Republic is named by decree a president or a member in place of the dismissed, resigned, or deceased president or member for a period not exceeding the remaining term of his predecessor.

Article 55 – In his criminal prosecution, a member of the court is subject to the rules and competencies followed in the trial of judges in accordance with the law of the judicial authority, and in the event that a member commits a flagrant offense, the president of the court shall be immediately informed of the matter.

Article 56 – A member of the court is prohibited from what is prohibited for judges.

Article 57 – A- The president of the court shall be treated as a minister in terms of wages, compensation, retirement pension and all other benefits.
B- The lump sum monthly salary of a member of the Supreme Constitutional Court is set at eighty thousand Syrian pounds, and representation compensation at ten thousand Syrian pounds.
C- Court members benefit from all compensation received by judges, including judicial bonds.

Article 58 – The general body of the court shall decide on the request submitted to dismiss, disqualify, or quarrel with the president and members of the court, except for the member complained of. The number of members present is an odd number so that the most recent members are excluded, and all or some of the court members are not accepted, so that the number of the remaining members is less. about five.

Article 59 – The court’s judicial holidays and vacations shall be specified in its internal system.
Article 60 – A court member from among the judges shall return to his previous job after the end of his term in the court, unless he has completed the retirement age specified in the Law of the Judicial Authority or the Law of the State Council.

Article 61
a- If a court member is named from among the judges covered by the Judicial Authority Law or the State Council Law, his membership in the Court has been counted as actual service that is included in the calculation of promotion, promotion or retirement.
B- If the court member is named as one of the lawyers registered in the register, he refrains from practicing the legal profession during his term of membership in the court while his name remains registered in the register of his union. Due in accordance with the Law on the Practice of the Legal Profession and the attached regulations.
C- If a court member is named as a faculty member in the Faculty of Law, he continues to be a member of the faculty, and is considered part-time in his faculty during his term of membership in the court, during which he receives the compensation that his full-time peers receive.

Chapter Seven

Administrative and Financial Affairs

Article 62 – The president of the court supervises its work and represents it in its relations with third parties.
Article 63 – The president of the court is the alimony contracter and the order of disbursement and liquidation, and he may delegate one of its members to do so.
Article 64 – The president of the court exercises, with regard to its employees, the powers exercised by the competent minister.

Article 65 –
A – It is permissible to transfer and delegate employees from the staff of the Ministry of Justice to the court and vice versa with the approval of the Minister of Justice and the President of the Court in accordance with the laws in force.
B – The provisions of the Judicial Authority Law or the Basic Law of State Personnel shall be applied to court employees with regard to disciplinary and disciplinary accountability.
Article 66
A- The court shall have an annual budget and a final account, which shall be included in the state’s general budget with all its expenditures, and it shall be considered an independent accounting unit.
B- The public body shall prepare and approve the court’s draft budget.
C- The president of the court exercises the powers granted to the Minister of Finance in the laws and regulations regarding the execution of the court’s budget.
d- The provisions of the Basic Financial Law in the State shall apply to the court’s budget and final account in matters not provided for in this law.

Chapter Eight

General Provisions

Article 67 – The Supreme Constitutional Court is not entitled to consider the constitutionality of laws proposed by the President of the Republic to a popular referendum and which obtain the approval of the people.
Article 68 – The court’s general assembly issues regulations related to its knowledge.
Article 69 – The staffing of the Supreme Constitutional Court is issued by decree, and the current staffing of the Court is considered a part of it.
Article 70 – Legislative Decree No. (35) issued on May 13, 2012 shall be repealed.
Article 71 – This law shall be published in the Official Gazette.

Damascus on 6/16/1435 AH corresponding to 4/16/2014 AD

President of the Republic

Bashar al-Assad


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