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4 out of every 10 Turkish women experience domestic violence, academic study says

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Four out of every 10 Turkish women experience domestic violence during their lifetime, the Stockholm Center for Freedom reported citing BBC Turkish service.

According to the report, citing a study by the Ankara-based Hacettepe University Population Studies Institute, 75 percent of women who are divorced or separated from their spouses are victims of physical abuse. Nine percent of women suffer from sexual abuse during their childhood.

The results of the study, which was conducted in 2008 and 2014, were presented to the Parliamentary Investigation Committee on Violence Against Women.

According to Dr. İlknur Yüksel Kaptanoğlu of Hacettepe University, women mostly suffer from domestic violence at the hands of their spouses or partners. The study suggests that younger women suffer from violence more. Twenty-four percent of women aged 15-24 say they have suffered from domestic violence at some point in their life.

According to the study, the percentage of women suffering from domestic violence decreases with an increase in the level of education.

Stalking is another serious problem faced by a high percentage of women, the study shows. Approximately one-third of all women are victims of it. Receiving constant telephone calls is the most common form of stalking, followed by sending text messages and emails, and stalking through social media and in person.

Femicide and violence against women have become serious problems in Turkey. Victims say authorities are not effective in protecting them and that the police do not take action against men who violate restraining orders. Despite the increasing number of deaths and women who have filed against their partners due to violence, in a move that attracted widespread criticism from several countries, international organizations and rights groups, Turkey withdrew from the Istanbul Convention through a presidential decree issued by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on March 20.

The Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence, widely known as the Istanbul Convention, was signed by 45 countries and the European Union in 2011 and requires governments to adopt legislation prosecuting perpetrators of domestic violence and similar abuse as well as marital rape and female genital mutilation.

Turkey was the first member state to ratify the CoE convention, which was opened for signature in Istanbul during Turkey’s chairmanship of the organization 10 years ago.

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