Eighteen women were murdered by men in Turkey in June and 20 more died under suspicious circumstances, in the third month since Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan withdrew from the Istanbul Convention, according to the latest report released by the We Will End Femicide Platform.
Nine of the women were killed at home. Twelve were murdered by their current or former husband or partner; four were killed by a relative or acquaintance; and one was murdered by her father, according to the June report.
The report further showed that nine of the femicides were committed with a gun, while four of the women were killed with a knife.
In four of the incidents, the women were murdered because they wanted to make their own decisions about their lives, such as wanting a divorce or refusing to remarry or get back together with their former husbands or partners, while two women were killed due to financial reasons.
“The inability to determine the reason why 12 women were killed is because violence against women and femicides are being rendered invisible [in Turkey]. Unless it is determined by whom and why women were killed, unless a fair trial is held and the suspects and murderers are given deterrent punishments and preventive measures are implemented, violence [against women] will continue to increase,” the platform underlined.
Referring to Erdoğan’s latest advice that Turkey’s young people shouldn’t wait until they’re 30 to get married, the platform said: “Stop trying to interfere with the decisions we make in the name of ‘suggestion,’ we will make our own decisions. The duty of the authorities is not to interfere in our choices but to enforce the law and ensure that each person responsible does the same.”
“There’s a new trend now. Neither boys nor girls get married before the age of 30. … I believe that you should get married without delay, I say this for both our boys and girls. And of course, as I always say at wedding ceremonies; [you should have]at least three children. Because we need it,” Erdoğan said as he spoke to youngsters at a video conference in late June.
Femicides and violence against women are serious problems in Turkey, where women get killed, raped or beaten every day. Many critics say that the main reason behind the situation is the policies of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government, which protects violent and abusive men by granting them impunity.
Erdoğan sparked outrage in Turkey and the international community after he pulled the country out of the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence, better known as the Istanbul Convention, on March 20.
The country on Thursday formally exited the 2011 accord, which has been signed by 45 countries and the European Union and requires governments to adopt legislation linked to the prosecution of crimes including marital rape and female genital mutilation.