Outraged over mother’s murder, Turkish women demand protection

Turkey was shaken when a brutal video was posted on social media Aug. 23, showing the last moments of a woman’s life after she was stabbed by her former husband.

Emine Bulut, 38, is seen covered in blood and clutching her throat as she says, “I don’t want to die.” Next to her, her 10-year-old daughter screams, “Mom, please don’t die.”

On Aug. 18, the pair had met with her ex-husband Fedia Varan in the central Anatolian city of Kirikkale. An argument ensued and Varan attacked Bulut.

“After she insulted me while talking about the custody of our child, I stabbed her with the knife I keep with me,” Varan told prosecutors after being taken into custody.

The event has been a watershed moment in a nation where the murder rate of women has surpassed one a day in 2019. According to the women’s rights platform We Will Stop Femicide, at least 285 Turkish women have died violently so far this year.

Government officials have responded by saying that harsher punishments are needed to deter future incidents, yet women’s rights advocates say the Turkish legal system already provides robust protections for victims of domestic violence and they simply are not being implemented.

Turkey was among the first signatories of the Council of Europe’s 2011 Istanbul Convention to combat violence against women. The document outlines the legal framework to investigate and prosecute perpetrators of domestic violence while bolstering protection and support mechanisms for victims.

Though the convention came into effect Aug. 1, 2014, women’s rights advocates said some of its most basic provisions have yet to be enacted due to pushback from conservative political and religious leaders who claim the convention harms “family unity.”

Read the full story on Al Monitor: https://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2019/08/mother-murder-women-violence-domestic-law-turkey.html#ixzz5xjqJUm3o