100,000 divorces take place annually in Turkey, minister says

100,000 divorces take place annually in Turkey, minister says

ADANA - Doğan News Agency
100,000 divorces take place annually in Turkey, minister says

Two couples in Turkey celebrate their marriage. Some 500,000 new marriages and 100,000 divorces take place in Turkey each year, the Family Ministry says. DHA photo

Each year 100,000 couples divorce in Turkey while 500,000 to 600,000 couples tie the knot, according to Turkey’s Family and Social Policies Minister Fatma Şahin.

Şahin told her fellow Justice and Development Party members in Adana that 500,000 to 600,000 marriages take place in Turkey every year. Countering the newly formed families, about 100,000 to 200,000 couples decide to end their marriages. Thirty-nine percent of divorces take place within the first five years of marriage, Şahin said, adding that the ministry’s work had prevented some of these early separations.

“Our work in five different cities has changed the minds of 15 couples out of 450 wishing to get a divorce,” Şahin said. “The divorce rates were highest during the financial crisis of 2001, and 140,000 divorces occurred that year. There was a minor increase in 2008, but precautions have pulled that down again.” Şahin defined their work in the field as a “three-dimensional system,” starting with a premarital education course provided for engaged couples.

An example of such a course recently began in Antalya, with couples encouraged to enroll in courses before getting married. Five couples have enrolled in classes that are set to begin once a total of 10 couples have signed on. Courses will focus on communication, issues of health and law during marital life.

Booklet on easy marriage

The ministry’s February release of a revised booklet aiming to ease couples into married life had also been reported. The booklet, “Communication in Marriage and Life Skills,” offers guidance to couples through different stages of married life, from early honeymoon days to subsequent domestic disputes, explaining in detail what constitutes a good and healthy marriage, including repeated advice on the couples’ sex life. Şahin also noted that the ministry was working to completely eradicate violence against women rather than just develop better ways of handling cases of violence.