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Turkish parliament to probe violence against women

Turkish women have protested in November last year against domestic violence [Getty]

Date of publication: 8 March, 2021

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A video on social media purportedly showing a man beating his ex-wife in front of their five-year-old child pushed Turkey to legally tackle violence against women

Turkey will establish a parliamentary committee to tackle violence against women after a high-profile incident outraged the country at the weekend, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday.

Turkish media regularly reports on killings and non-fatal attacks against women, often carried out by partners or relatives, with videos frequently going viral.

The latest case to grab national attention was a video on social media purportedly showing a man beating his ex-wife in front of their five-year-old child on a street in the Black Sea province of Samsun.

The attacker, who was named as Ibrahim Zarap and arrested on Sunday, is accused of "intentional attempted murder".

Erdogan promised to establish the parliamentary committee during a televised speech to the congress of the ruling party's women's branch on International Women's Day.

"We will not let women suffer from violence," the president said in Ankara, vowing that the government would follow the latest case closely.

Violence against women is a controversial topic in Turkey, with Erdogan's critics accusing him of failing to do enough to stop such aggression.

The number of women being killed each year has risen in the past decade to 300 last year, according to the rights group We Will Stop Femicide Platform.

There is also fury that despite Turkey ratifying a landmark treaty to prevent violence against women, Erdogan's party has considered withdrawing from the pact.

For activists, the government needs to do more to implement the treaty rather than engage in a debate over whether Turkey should withdraw.

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