Honoring Killings in Turkey

Honoring Killings in Turkey

Honor killings refer to the murder of people (primarily women) who have supposedly committed some act deemed to be a violation of honor.
Such acts may include marrying someone regarded as “unsuitable,” sex before marriage, demanding a divorce, a woman (married or unmarried) being raped, or even things as mundane and innocent as calling a radio station to ask for a song to be played on air, a girl seen talking to a boy.

The practice of honor killings is rooted in ancient tribal customs whereby the “honor” of a family or a whole village is represented by the morality, chastity and proper behavior of its women. Any perceived violation of that sense of honor often leads to deadly consequences.

Honor crimes are also widespread among Sikhs and Hindus in India, across North Africa, and have even been reported in Eastern Europe and Brazil. It is also on the increase in Western Europe and North America.

Nonetheless, Turkey is a key focal point in the battle against honor crimes. Straddling Europe and Asia, the vast Turkish nation enjoys a surging economy and is becoming a dominant regional power. As it continues to modernize (and one day hopes to join the European Union), the ancient practice of honor killing remains a blot on its society.

International Business Times spoke with Bingul Durbas, a doctoral researcher in Sociology/ Gender Studies at the University of Sussex in England, about honor killings in Turkey.

More about honor killings in Turkey

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