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Protesters call for an end to violence against women in Turkey

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ISTANBUL (AP) – Thousands of people joined a Women’s Day march in central Istanbul on Monday to condemn violence against women in Turkey, where more than 400 women were killed last year.

As in previous years, for security reasons, police set up barricades and blocked the protesters’ march to the city’s main square, Taksim. Unable to reach Taksim, the protesters marched in the opposite direction to the shores of the Bosphorus, where the march ended peacefully.

The perpetrators are demanding strong measures to stop attacks on women by former partners or family members, as well as the government’s commitment to the European Convention against Violence against Women.

Some officials in President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s pro-Islamist party have called for a revision of the agreement, arguing that it encourages divorce and promotes LGBT culture, which they say runs counter to the country’s conservative values.

A total of 68 women have been killed in the country since the beginning of the year, according to We Stop Stop Femicide Platform. According to the group, at least 408 women were killed in 2020.

Earlier on Monday, Erdogan promised to set up a new parliamentary commission to look into ways to prevent attacks on women, saying “we simply cannot allow this to happen.”

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