But it’s a reality !!!
The Turkish parliament is about to pass a new law that would allow men charged with physically abusing girls under the age of 18 to avoid punishment if they marry the victim.
The disputable so-called’ marry your rapist ‘ bill will be brought before parliament at the end of the month for discussion by MPs in Turkey. The proposed legislation legitimizes criminal breach, child marriage and encourages abuse of children and sexual exploitation to flourish.
Opposition parliamentarians have opposed the measure, which cautioned girls that such a law would contribute to marriages and to rape.
The People’s Democratic Party of Turkey calls on the Government to suspend this move. The Turkish Parliament had a similar bill in 2016 but was dropped as a result of public uproar.
The harassment of girls and women is not a new concept in Turkey but the condition will further deteriorate if this bill is successfully passed in the parliament. According to a report by the UN, 38 per cent of Turkish women are known to have been physically or sexually abused in their lifetime. Although the legal age of consent is 18 in Turkey, a government report on child marriage in 2018 reports that in the last ten years 482,908 minors have been married.
In 2017–and this was passed–another law was introduced that requires Islamic muftis and clerics to hold ceremonies on civil marriage, which would potentially open up the door to child abuse and child marriages.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was accused of being a sexist in the past after his statement in a summit in Istanbul, that women are not equal to men and he even urged women to have at least three children otherwise her life was “incomplete”
When enacted, the bill would pave the way for child marriages and will lead to the legitimization of statutory rape in the country. It will also provide an opportunity for sexual offenders to escape the punishment of child abuse and sexual harassment.
Sad Abu-Dayyeh, a women rights activist and now a girl’s rights organization working in North East, North Africa, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, said in her interview with The Independent: “I endorse the courageous efforts of women’s rights activists in Turkey by standing up against this discriminatory legislation and opposing retrogressive effort to remove the existing legal safeguards.
This law, if implements, will open more doors to child sexual abuse and will encourage rapes in the country. Such a law is not just objectionable but is fatal to the very existence of a woman. It is a matter of grave concern that the people we elect to protect us are the one deteriorating our condition!
We at Respect Women highly condemn this law and are standing in solidarity with the women of Turkey.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: This article is written by Snehil Patel, our intern.