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Turkey: Over 300 Women Victims of Domestic Violence in 2019

Turkey: Over 300 Women Victims of Domestic Violence in 2019

Tuesday, 26 November, 2019 - 06:45
Women hold placards as they march against domestic violence, in Paris, Saturday, Nov, 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)

Domestic violence crimes committed against women have seen an alarming increase in 2019, with over 300 women losing their lives after being subjected to violence in Turkey.

According to statistics by Turkish organizations active in the field of defending women's rights and supporting women against violence, 302 women were killed and 532 others were severely injured by men in 324 day, from January 1 till October 20, 2019.

According to reports released by those organizations on Sunday, at least 12 women are hospitalized in dangerous conditions caused by domestic violence.

The reports revealed that 198 of the victims were killed by a husband, boyfriend, ex-husband, or ex-boyfriend, and 31 others were murdered by a brother, father, or son in the so-called "honor killing".

The figures also showed that 20 women were killed by a neighbor or friend, 8 women by relatives for different reasons, 19 women by the son-in-law or ex-son-in-law, one woman by the police, one by a parent of a student, and one by her employer.

The statistics show that the rate of domestic violence against women in Turkey has jumped to 75 percent over the past 15 years.

On September 28, human rights groups defending women against violence organized a march in Istanbul to protest against violence targeting women, during which the participants condemned "the failure of the government" in addressing this worsening phenomenon.

During the march, the protesting women shouted "stop killing women, do not stand still, do something to stop the violence."

The organization of the march came as a response to the recurrent incidents of violence against women, and mainly the murder of Amina Boulot, 38, by her ex-husband in August.

He stabbed her in her neck during a fight they had in a restaurant in Istanbul, and their 10-year-old daughter was there. The crime shocked the Turkish community, and still makes headlines in the local media until today.

After this crime, a video showing the stabbed woman, her hands on the man's neck and crying "I don't want to die," stirred a wave of condemnation among calls for more firm regulations aimed at putting an end to violence crimes committed against women.

The Turkish law gives the judges significant powers and provisions allowing them to reduce sentences of men violating women.

A Turkish women rights activist said Turkey was among the first countries to sign the Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence (also known as the Istanbul Convention), which came into effect in 2014. However, the convention didn't contribute to a stricter implementation of laws.

The court decisions in these cases are still loose, and judges can easily reduce sentences for many reasons such as good behavior, and being subject to provocation and severe emotions.

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