Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

Turkish men wear mini-skirts and take to the streets, in protest at student's brutal rape murder

464029844.jpg

Men across Turkey have dressed up in mini-skirts to protest the brutal rape and murder of 20-year-old student, Ozgecan Aslan. 

Aslan's death has sent shock-waves across Turkey and raises serious questions about the country's treatment of women, at a time when sexual and physical violence against the female population is on the rise and often goes unreported. 

Aslan was abducted on February 11 in Mersin in southern Turkey and was allegedly killed after trying to stop a mini bus-driver from raping her. It is thought she was stabbed and hit in the head with a metal bar after attempting to defend herself from attack by using pepper spray. 

Her burned body was found in a riverbed, with her hands cut off in an attempt to hide DNA evidence that would have been under her fingernails. The main suspect's friend and father have now been accused of helping him to burn the body.

skirt

A young woman protests in Ankara

The discovery of Aslan's body led to widespread outrage and prompted angry protests in Istanbul's Taksim square, where hundreds of men and women gathered over the weekend dressed in dresses, skirts and miniskirts.  

According to a Facebook page set up to organise the demonstration, the clothing was intended to make the point that how women choose to dress is no excuse for harassment. 

"If a miniskirt is responsible for everything, if [wearing] a miniskirt means immorality and unchastity, if a woman who wears a miniskirt is sending an invitation about what will happen to her, then we are also sending an invitation!" the activists wrote. 

According to local news agency Anadolu, protesters shouted "You will never walk alone" as well as "We will put an end to female homicides" and "We are here today. We revolt and we will continue to revolt until this stops."

President of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has also weighed in on the case, tweeting: "To make sure the perpetrators who brutally slayed our daughter, Ozgecan, get the heaviest punishment that they deserve, I will personally pursue this lawsuit."

skirt

A Turkish man shares a solidarity picture on Twitter

In addition to the protests on the streets, Turkish men have been posting pictures of themselves on social media using the hashtag #ozgecanicinminietekgiy, which translates as "wear a miniskirt for Ozgecan". 

"The women's movement is trying to tell society, 'My dress is not an excuse for your rape or sexual harassment.' But society didn't want to hear these voices," said Turkish lawyer and activist Hulya Gulbahar to CNN about the protests. "People try to find excuses for rapes and killings. But they didn't find any in this case, because Aslan was very innocent, purely innocent. The protest shows that a short skirt is not an excuse for rape."

Women's rights are a huge issue in Turkey, with domestic abuse cases and murder rates against women on the rise. The New York Times reports that almost 300 women were murdered in 2014 in Turkey, with 27 killed last month alone.

skirt

Hundreds of women are murdered and assaulted in Turkey every year

Related

158696374.jpg

The world's most dangerous transport systems for women

angelina.jpg

10 inspiring speeches by women

rape conviction use this

Barrister sparks outcry with 'deeply offensive' blog post on rape

rexfeatures_4216034b.jpg

Oscar Pistorius jailed for five years for Reeva Steenkamp killing

Nailah.jpg

PROMOTION: On the Beat with the Met Police

rexfeatures_1221742p.jpg

2014's most powerful and provocative longreads

Comments

More

Messy people everywhere, scientists have very good news for you

Show this article to the next person who dares to complain about your messy desk

by Kayleigh Dray
28 Apr 2017

Science says this is how to get over a break up

Because how many Celine Dion power ballads can we really perfect?

by Jasmine Andersson
28 Apr 2017

Cheese addicts, science says that brie could help you live longer

We can’t brie-lieve it…

by Kayleigh Dray
28 Apr 2017

Netflix's GLOW celebrates the might of women in all forms

The new show might be the best thing to hit Netflix this year

by Jasmine Andersson
28 Apr 2017

Calling all Harry Potter superfans: we've found your dream job

Fancy running the new Harry Potter exhibition?

by Jasmine Andersson
28 Apr 2017

The innovative beer advert trying to bring people together

It has already clocked up millions of views on YouTube

by Amy Swales
28 Apr 2017

Viral photo series captures what it truly means to be black and Muslim

The photo series captures “the most resilient people in the world"

by Jasmine Andersson
28 Apr 2017

First Dates’ Raymond taught us an important lesson about loneliness

‘Just to hear somebody else breathing… that’s all I want’

by Kayleigh Dray
27 Apr 2017

These cheesy, cheesy recipes will give you life

Get a load of this fromagerie

by Jasmine Andersson
27 Apr 2017

This Commuter Barbie video is the most relatable thing we’ve ever seen

“Commuter Barbie has a seat at the table – and on the train!”

by Sarah Biddlecombe
27 Apr 2017