Turkish father braves family to prevent daughter’s murder
Banu Şen - İZMİR
A Turkish girl had been saved thanks to the efforts of her father, who prevented his daughter from being murdered by his family in the western province of İzmir.
The 16-year-old girl, who reportedly suffers from schizophrenia, was abducted by two men one year ago after she had escaped from her house, where she had been kept in chains by her family.
After she was sexually abused for days her screams were heard by a passerby, who notified police of the incident.
Police raided the house and saved the girl from the two abductors, who had claimed she had consented in the sexual relationships.
While the two men were arrested, police wanted to return the girl to her family but this was prevented by her father after he learned that their family was planning to murder her.
Her brothers reportedly decided to kill her after deciding as a family that the “family’s honor was stained.” The girl’s father then requested to be taken under protection with his daughter.
Turkey Federation of Women’s Association (TKDF) head Canan Güllü reached out to help the father and daughter and notified a volunteer lawyer from the association in order for the sexual abusers to receive the severest punishment possible.
As a first step, the father and daughter were brought under protection in an undisclosed location.
Lawyer Sibel Önder, who has been handling cases related to women, presented a letter she received from the two men to the court as evidence, which included threats and confession-like statements.
Finally, two weeks ago, one of the abusers was sentenced to 21 years and three months in jail on several charges, including “sexual abuse” and “deprivation of liberty,” while the other man was given 15 years in jail.
Additional complaints were also filed against the two for threatening the lawyer and forced prostitution.
While the father and the girl are still being kept in a secret location to protect them from their family, Önder has described the case as one “filled with pain.”
“While death has no voice, I do,” said Önder, saying that as a female lawyer, she was not afraid of pressure.
“Fear has no place in my world. I will seek justice to the end if someone is subjected to unjust treatment. Child sexual abuse, murders and rapes never end. Sentences must be way higher. Every suffering women should know there is someone who can be their voice,” Önder told daily Hürriyet.