Row over female body in charter panel
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily NewsParliament’s Constitution Conciliation Commission failed to reach an agreement on a provision on “the protection of the human being’s physical and spiritual entity and integrity,” after a debate was sparked on the “commoditization of female bodies.”
The panel debated three articles that had been agreed upon in a sub-commission. The commission agreed on the provisions on the “banning of ill-treatment and torture” as well as “the right to life,” however, main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) members proposed an amendment to the provision on “the protection of the human being’s physical and spiritual entity and integrity.” The CHP’s Atilla Kart reportedly spoke on the concept of the “human body” within the provision that the “human body and organs cannot be commoditized against human dignity.”
“Public authorities could be interventionist using the concept of ‘human body.’ For example, the Supreme Board of Radio and Television [RTÜK] could be interventionist using the concept of commoditizing female bodies. Beauty contests could be banned on the grounds that they commoditize women’s bodies. We don’t want to form a basis for state interventions,” Kart said at the meeting, the Hürriyet Daily News has learned.
The CHP proposed using the concept of “bodily integrity” instead of “human body.” The Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) lent support to the CHP, however, ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) members disagreed with the CHP. The provision was skipped after the row.