There are certain countries across the world that come up with annoying bills for women. Everyone is quite familiar with the fact that the violence against girls and women is common in Turkey. The Independent reports that 38 per cent of Turkish women suffered physical or sexual violence from a partner according to the United Nations.
Meanwhile, the lawmakers in Turkey are planning to bring in a controversial bill in the nation’s parliament called Marry-Your-Rapist. This means that the law will enable the men accused of sexual abuse to get rid of punishment if they marry the victim. The bill is known to be introduced to the Parliament at end of this month but it hasn’t gone down too well with women in the country as it sparked outrage among the women’s rights activists.
The People’s Democratic Party, which is the party in opposition, is opposed to the bill. According to them, if the law is passed, then things would get more complicated as it paves way for legitimising child marriages and statutory rape. In addition, it will let people get away with child abuse and sexual exploitation. It should be noted that the legal age of consent in Turkey is 18 years.
UN agencies warned that such a law would pave way for child abuse and leave the survivors of sexual abuse feeling even more vulnerable. The United Nations agencies also condemned the bill by adding: “If adopted in its current form, the draft Bill would weaken Turkey’s ability to combat sexual abuse and child marriage.”
Suad Abu-Dayyeh, who is a campaigner works for promoting the rights of women and girls. She told The Independent, “I applaud the brave work of women’s rights campaigners in Turkey who are taking a stand against this discriminatory bill and pushing back again regressive forces that are seeking to remove current legal protections for girls. Similar ‘marry-your-rapist’ legal provisions have been on the statute books of countries across the Middle East and North Africa.”
Suad Abu-Dayyeh further added, “Thanks to years of campaigning by women’s rights activists and lawmakers, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Tunisia, and Palestine have all removed these loopholes in recent years. Rather than attempting to introduce legislation that harms women’s rights and protections, Turkish lawmakers should take heed of these advances in repealing gender discriminatory laws.”