Murdered woman’s funeral shunned by family

Murdered woman’s funeral shunned by family

DİYARBAKIR – Doğan News Agency
Murdered woman’s funeral shunned by family

DHA Photo

A woman killed by her father-in-law in the eastern province of Diyarbakır’s Bismil district was buried by a group of female activists, in the presence of the local mayor.

Meltem Özdaş, 22, was shot dead by her father-in-law on Feb. 18 when she attempted to take her children from his house. Özdaş’s body was not collected by her relatives from Diyarbakır State Hospital for 15 days.

On March 6, a group of female activists and Diyarbakır Mayor Osman Baydemir retrieved the body and held the funeral prayer at a mosque in the company of a very small number of people. None of the deceased’s relatives were among those present.

The female activists carried the coffin and buried Özdaş in Yeniköy cemetery.

Married to her aunt’s son at the age of 17, Özdaş, a mother of one, filed for divorce from her husband.

Refik Özdaş killed her and Mehmet Işık, 32, her alleged boyfriend, when she came to their house to take her daughter. Baydemir condemned the killing of Özdaş in the cemetery. “Regardless of the reasons for it, this [violence against women] is a shame for this society,” he said.

“2,000 women are exposed to domestic violence each year. Five or six women are killed every day … Unfortunately, laws cannot protect women. It is the responsibility of society to stand against this. If killing a woman is masculinity, I condemn it,” Baydemir added.