The infamous proposal to legalize child sexual abuse is now again on Turkey’s agenda. The "child rape pardon law," which was withdrawn three years ago due to the public outrage, will be soon discussed in the parliament. Lawyer Müjde Tozbey Erden stated that the child rape pardon law will not only enable society and state to safeguard rape but also will cause human/women trafficking.
After three years, the Turkish public now discusses the proposal which foresees suspension of the penalty or suspension of the pronouncement of the judgement in case of a marriage between the victim and the offender. The proposal was withdrawn as a result of women protests and public outrage.
'THE OFFENDERS COULD BE PROTECTED THROUGH INTIMIDATION OR BRIDE PRICE'
According to lawyer Erden, "after having abused the child, the offender could save oneself by intimidating the family or purchasing the child with bride price. The families could also give consent to marriage by regarding child rape as an affair of honour instead of considering a better education for their daughters."
THE PROPOSAL WILL LEGALISE CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE'
According to Erden:
"After the proposal was withdrawn three years ago, Turkish Penalty Law Article 103 was amended. Accordingly, the previous law foresaw penalty of imprisonment for offences against minors under 15 years old whereas the current foresees penalty of imprisonment for offences against minors under 12 years old.
In 2016, the Constitutional Court decided against high (?) punishment (penalty?) in case of any child abuse because for instance a 13-year-old female minor could engage in sexual intercourse with consent. In case of such situation, the Court advised for the amendment of Turkish Penalty Law in accordance with the principle of equity.
Therefore, Turkish Penalty Law Article 103 was amended to foresee different punishments for the offenders against above 12-years-old and under 12-years-old. In this way, the offenders against above 12-years-old would be charged with lower (?) punishment (penalty?).
Nevertheless, one shall never discuss the Constitutional Court’s decision given in 2016 irrespective of its decision given in 2015, which allowed religious marriage, and thus, made the obligatory civil marriage a discretionary one. For that matter, the Court’s decision should be considered in relation to ‘the child rape pardon law’.
In this sense, the child rape pardon law aims to enable the offender to negotiate with the family of an abused child, who is above 12 years old, and avoid any punishment by paying the family bride price and having a religious marriage. In this way, child rape will be normalised and legitimised in law and in the eyes of society. This will not only enable the state and society to safeguard child rape but also human/women trafficking.
The offender could save oneself by intimidating the family or purchasing the child with the 'bride price.' The families could also give consent to marriage by regarding child rape as an affair of honour instead of considering a better education for their daughters.
We shall never allow such a future for our daughters. We shall fight against such reactionary and prevent the enactment of ‘the child rape pardon law’ so that reactionarism that seeks to encompass our lives cannot get a hold of our children.