Turkish PM calls for media action on violence against women

Published February 20th, 2015 - 08:52 GMT
The recent murder of a 20-year-old female student prompted a media platform Thursday. (AFP/Adem Altan)
The recent murder of a 20-year-old female student prompted a media platform Thursday. (AFP/Adem Altan)

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has called on Turkish local media organizations to mobilize against violence targeting women and children.

"My call to the local media is to declare a mobilization on violence against women and children in all their broadcasts and publications," he told a symposium titled "New Turkey and Media," which was held by Anadolu Media Platform at Ankara's JW Marriott Hotel late Thursday.

His remarks came after the recent murder of Ozgecan Aslan, a 20 year-old female university student whose dead body was found burnt after she reportedly resisted a sexual assault in the southern city of Mersin last Friday.

The murder has been making the headlines in Turkey for the last week, reigniting discussions about the return of death penalty.

Davutoglu stressed that the media had to take a common stance against all who use the language of violence and hatred.

"Those who lay hands on women are the most cowardly ones. Real manliness is to choke down one's anger like the father of Ozgecan did," he said.

After the murder, Davutoglu as well as Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, thanked the parents of Ozgecan Aslan for their "dignified" stance throughout the ordeal. 

"We have no way out but to love. Let the perpetrators of this dire incident not be exposed to oppression. They must stand before trial and pay the penalty," the victim's father Mehmet Aslan said.

Also touching upon the country's solution process regarding the Kurdish issue, Davutoglu noted that it was not a mechanical negotiation process.

The "solution process" refers to the efforts by the Turkish government, launched in 2013, to end the decades-old conflict with the outlawed PKK in the country's eastern and southeastern regions which claimed more than 40,000 lives.

"For us, it is a campaign of hearts that will eternalize the bond between brotherly peoples who have lived together for ages," he added.

He added that as it was resolutely pursuing the solution process, the government was creating a political and cultural mentality so as to integrate Turkey step by step.


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