You deserve rape, Quran teacher tells children in Turkish school
DHA PhotoParents are demanding that a teacher of religion classes in northern Turkey be fired after he told some of his female students that they “deserve rape” for not wearing an Islamic headscarf.
“You don’t cover your head anyway, so raping you or doing evil to you is permissible [in Islam],” the female teacher, identified by the initials L.Y.İ., told students at the Halil Rıfat Paşa Middle School in the province of Tokat on March 9, according to parents who spoke to Doğan News Agency.
The teacher was reportedly angered by noise caused by mixed male and female students in an elective class on the Quran, during which 17 seventh graders were talking to each other instead of listening to the teacher.
According to the parents, the teacher also told the girls that they should have prayed for Özgecan Aslan - whose brutal murder in southern Turkey on Feb. 13 caused national outrage - instead of going to demonstrations to commemorate her.
Mahmut Demirbağ, the school’s headmaster, reportedly told the parents that the teacher “apologized” for the comments. However, some parents have continued to demand that she be dismissed, threatening legal action.
“She insulted 13-year-old girls for not wearing a headscarf during a Quran class, which is elective. This teacher cannot lecture my daughter,” a parent told the Doğan News Agency.
Levent Yazıcı, the education director in Tokat, said an official investigation into the claims had been launched, adding that the teacher had been temporarily appointed to another school.
Elective classes on the Quran and the life of the Prophet Muhammad have been included in Turkish schools since 2012.
The religious education class, on the other hand, is compulsory. A recent European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ruling stated that high school students in Turkey must be allowed to opt out of this class to “ensure respect for parents’ convictions” and to guarantee the right to education.