New legislation on violence against women in works in Turkey's Parliament

EDA IŞIK
ISTANBUL
Published 28.08.2019 00:05
Updated 28.08.2019 10:44

The Justice Ministry is looking at the possibilities of new legislation on violence against women and the dissemination of videos showing acts of violence against women.

The decision comes after Emine Bulut, a resident of central Turkey's Kırıkkale, was attacked with a knife by her ex-husband. The attack took place in a restaurant. It was videotaped and later posted on social media.

The incident caused outrage and revived the debate on women's safety at the hands of their estranged spouses.

The video shows Bulut covered in blood, holding her wound. She later died in a hospital, four days before the video went viral. Her 10-year-old daughter, who was also at the scene, has been put under the care of social services.

Bulut's ex-husband and the two men who accompanied him out of the restaurant have been arrested.

The hashtag #EmineBulut has been trending on Twitter, as thousands of people condemned the killing of the 38-year-old woman. Many called on the authorities to ensure the harshest possible punishment for the murder suspect.

Meanwhile, to curb violence against women and murder, the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) is working on a legislative proposal for Parliament.

According to the proposal, the legal principle of good conduct time would not be applied for criminals charged for the murder of a woman.

It also proposes that such criminals spend a part of their prison time in solitary confinement. The new regulations will also punish people who record and spread online acts of violence or murder.

In the last 17 years, the AK Party government has launched numerous initiatives to enhance women's roles and status in society. The ratio of women in management in Turkey increased to 15.6% in 2018 from just 8.9% in 2002. At the same time, women's participation in the labor force rose from 27.9% to 34.1%. In 2005, the number of employed women stood at 5.11 million. As of November 2018, that number has reached 8.96 million. The labor force participation rate of women also increased to 34.1% in 2018, from 23.3% in 2005.

Other initiatives created by Turkey include supporting young girls who want to be engineers, providing stipends to grandmothers take care of their grandchildren, various vocational training, seminars on financial literacy and benefits for working moms. The rate of women's representation in the Turkish Parliament rose to 17.4% after the 2018 elections, up from 4.4% in 2002.

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