Femicide victim was told by police to deal with abuse herself, witness testimony reveals

Photo: MA

Remziye Yoldaş, who was murdered by her husband Veysi Yoldaş in August 2020, was told to “deal with it yourself” by police officers when she went to file a complaint against him for abuse, witness testimony revealed during court proceedings on Tuesday.

According to the Mezopotamya News Agency (MA), Yoldaş’s father Ahmet Tura said his daughter had gone to a police station in Diyarbakır but was dismissed by the officers.

“After my daughter’s pleas for help were dismissed, her husband came to my shop and threatened us at gunpoint,” he said.

Veysi Yoldaş was under arrest for a different crime but escaped from prison 10 days before the murder and went after his estranged wife and her family.

Remziye’s lawyer Nida Baltalı said the husband had escaped prison with the intention of killing his wife.

Remziye’s mother Sevile Tura said Veysi Yoldaş had approached her daughter on several occasions, threatened and abused her.

“One time he tried to strangle her and we called the police, but they didn’t come for 45 minutes,” she said.

Femicides and violence against women are serious problems in Turkey, where women are killed, raped or beaten every day. Many critics say that the main reason behind the situation is the policies of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government, which protects violent and abusive men by granting them impunity.

In 2020, 300 women were murdered, and the rate shows no sign of slowing, with 79 women killed in the first three months of 2021, according to the We Will Stop Femicide Platform.

Victims of violence have said Turkish authorities are ineffective in combatting violence. They say their complaints to the police about abusive partners go unanswered and are ignored.

Despite the alarming numbers and women’s testimony about ineffective policies, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan withdrew from the Istanbul Convention on March 20.

The Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence, widely known as the Istanbul Convention, was signed by 45 countries and the European Union in 2011 and requires governments to adopt legislation prosecuting perpetrators of domestic violence and similar abuse as well as marital rape and female genital mutilation.

Turkey was the first member state to ratify the CoE convention, which was opened for signature in Istanbul during Turkey’s chairmanship of the organization 10 years ago.

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