Turkish feminists, belly dancer engage in ‘exploitation’ row
ANTALYAA group of women’s rights activists and a belly dancer have engaged in a heated argument on “the exploitation of a woman’s body” in southern Turkey.
Some 80 members of the Women’s Advisory Center and Support Association in Antalya participated in an International Woman’s Day event organized at a hotel in the Konyaaltı district late on March 10.
In the event, which was attended by around 200 women, the association’s members reacted strongly when a belly dancer took the stage, Doğan News Agency reported.
“We don’t approve of using a woman’s body or a man’s body as a marketing tool. We don’t want a belly dancer,” the association’s head, Nigar Duru, said after interrupting the belly dancer by climbing the stage, grabbing the microphone and silencing the music.
Eftal Gönültaş, the belly dancer who uses the stage name “Oryantal Eftal,” stood aside and listened to Duru before grabbing the microphone back and condemning her for “obstructing my work.”
The belly dancer left the stage after the activists’ protests continued.
“This is my job. I am doing it honorably. I condemn the women solidarity association’s protest,” Gönültaş later told Doğan News Agency.
Duru, on the other hand, insisted the protest was actually protecting the rights of the belly dancer.
“We don’t oppose dancers. They are also laborers. We are just against the system that exploits a woman’s body,” she stated.