Court rejects Turkish domestic violence victim’s compensation demand for ‘not calling police at gunpoint’
İZMİR – Doğan News Agency
A court in the western province of İzmir has turned down a compensation demand from a victim of domestic violence, stating that the woman, who was under state protection at the time, had “failed” to call the police while being threatened by her ex-husband with a gun.
Jale Soydan 54, a lawyer by profession, was shot by her former husband in 2015 eight times in İzmir’s Karşıyaka district. The assailant was sentenced to 17 years and six months in prison, while Soydan made a slow but stirring recovery, starting to walk again with a cane following a long rehabilitation process.
Citing a precedent ruling handed down by the European Court of Human Rights, Soydan filed a claim for damages from the Interior Ministry and the Family and Social Policies Ministry for 200,000 Turkish Liras (around $53,000).
The İzmir 5th Administrative Court rejected Soydan’s demand, saying she failed to call the police during the 13 minutes she was being threatened by her former husband with a gun. This constituted a “violation of protection order rules,” the court stated in its ruling.
“My former husband threatened me several times, he tried to set me alight. How could I call the police and ask for help when my husband was threatening me with a gun in his hand?” Soydan said after the controversial ruling.
“What could I have done in fear and panic? I tried to dissuade him but he shot me. How am I at fault here? I cannot understand it. I will continue to seek my rights until the end,” she added.