Turkey's embattled Erdogan seeks wider powers for spy agency
* Proposals follow tighter controls on internet, courts
* Plans widen eavesdropping, data collection powers
Obama urges policies "rooted in rule of law"
By Orhan Coskun
ANKARA, Feb 20 (Reuters) - Battling a corruption scandal,
Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan is seeking broader powers
for his intelligence agency, including more scope for
eavesdropping and legal immunity for its top agent, according to
a draft law seen by Reuters.
The proposals submitted by Erdogan's AK Party late on
Wednesday are the latest in what his opponents see as an
authoritarian backlash against the graft inquiry, after
parliament passed laws tightening government control over the
Internet and the courts this month.
The bill gives the National Intelligence Organisation (MIT)
the authority to conduct operations abroad and tap pay phones
and international calls. It also introduces jail terms of up to
12 years for the publication of leaked classified documents.
It stipulates that only a top appeals court could try the