ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
The group members call themselves as ‘Irritated men’ (Rahatsız erkekler). DAILY NEWS photo
Following reactions and protests by Turkish women against a government plan to ban abortion, a group of men is also taking action to stop the government from rolling back women’s rights.
A group of men calling themselves the “Irritated Men” gathered in Istanbul on June 5 to raise their voice against the government’s plan to ban abortion.
“Our agenda, up until a week ago was the murder of women, now we’re talking about an abortion ban. The government’s neo-liberal policies have brought us to this point,” Orhan Cerav, the group’s spokesman said.
The group has decided to take a step against “manly talks on abortion” referring to comments on abortion by the mayor of Ankara, Melih Gökçek.
“Women kill their babies born out of adultery. Why do babies die because of these so-called mothers? Let mothers kill themselves,” Gökçek said in a newscast on private broadcaster Samanyolu on June 1.
Cerav said Gökçek’s statement was the final straw for them.
“Public opposition by a male front is badly needed. That’s why we gathered. It’s not just women; men are also irritated by the government’s anti-abortion campaign, but we also should show it,” Cerav told the Hürriyet Daily News. Another organizer, Kürşad Kızıltuğ, said the group had been active since Italian artist Pippa Bacca was raped and murdered in Turkey.
The group is planning to protest this Sunday in Istanbul’s Beyoğlu district.