Child abuse case stirs outrage

Child abuse case stirs outrage

Child abuse case stirs outrage

Politicians from the ruling AKP issued strong reactions successively over a lawsuit filed by a 24-year-old woman alleging that she was forcibly married at the age of six by her sect leader father with a sect member.

The woman, identified only by initials H.K.G., recently accused her father Yusuf Ziya Gümüşel, the head of Hiranur Foundation, which is affiliated with the İsmailağa Jamia, of organizing an imam marriage for her in 2004, when she was six years old.

According to a lawsuit she filed, the marriage with a sect member was shown to her as a “child play.” H.K.G. alleged that she was sexually abused for years in her childhood, and she realized this fact when she was grown up.

The first reaction came from Ömer Çelik, spokesperson for the ruling AKP, who tweeted on Dec. 7 cursing child abuse. “We are following the file closely. We will be nearby the victim and give support,” he added.

The Family and Social Services Ministry made a statement on Dec. 8, saying that the ministry “will be involved in the case.”

“Any kind of legal assistance will be supplied to the victim,” it stated.

In his statement on Dec. 8, Hamza Dağ, the vice chairman of AKP, also cursed the child abuse. “With no ‘but’s or however’s,’ we stand by the victim and across the guilty,” he said.

Culture and Tourism Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy said his ministry has appointed Labor and Social Security Minister Vedat Bilgin as inspector for the case and added that “they will not tolerate such dishonor.”

“If we keep silent [to such cases] our mankind would be [heavily] wounded,” Bilgin added.

The “marriage at age of six” case came to the country’s agenda when a daily published the allegations, saying that H.K.G. became a mother at the age of 17 and legally tied the knot at the age of 18.

Presenting her “engagement photos at the age of six” to the court. H.K.G. opened a sexual lawsuit in 2021 after her legal divorce.

Upon H.K.G.’s complaints, an Istanbul prosecutor prepared his indictment on Oct. 30, asking for 27-year-jail-terms for both her father and mother.

The case causing anger in social media also, came to the parliament’s agenda on Dec. 7, when Sera Kadıgil, a Workers Party of Türkiye (TİP) MP filed motions to six ministries.

In her motion to the Justice Ministry, Kadıgil questioned if there is any obstruction of justice in the case. She also asked if an investigation against the Hiranur Foundation will be opened or not.