At least 289 femicides in Turkey in 2023, over 3,100 in a decade

Bianet released a report on the eve of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. Almost 700 cases of violence have also been reported, with husbands, ex-husbands, or family members as the main perpetrators. In 165 cases, firearms were used, three women were burnt alive, and two were stoned to death. But the Turkish government pulled out of the Istanbul Convention.


Istanbul (AsiaNews) – In Turkey, men killed at least 289 women and committed acts of violence against 681 others in 324 days (1 January-21 November 2023), this according to a detailed report prepared by Bianet, a news agency that focuses on human rights.

The study was published today, eve of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, which the United Nations established in 1999 to be observed on 25 November around the world.

In the past decade (1 January 2013-21 November 2023), at least 3,151 women were killed, almost one femicide per day (0.85).

According to news collected from local and national newspapers, news websites, agencies and advocacy groups, men killed at least 289 women in femicides in various Turkish provinces this year – 13 were refugees fleeing war or violence in other countries, and 228 deaths were deemed "suspicious”.

In addition to hundreds of homicides, 350 confirmed cases of ill-treatment were reported in 2023, 116 cases of abuse, 681 cases of violence (including domestic violence), and 16 rapes or sexual crimes, but in this case the figure is vastly underestimated.

Men also forced 335 women into prostitution, reducing them to a state of sexual slavery.

Over the past decade, the data show that 3,151 women were killed by men, 6,005 were victims of violence, 2,246 of abuse, 937 of rape; there were also 979 suspicious deaths, 2,372 cases of harassment, 3,622 of forced sex work, and 208 child murder.

In some cases, a single man was responsible for killing more than one woman. At least 105 killers were arrested, 78 were taken into custody and 67 committed suicide, following their arrest.

About 186 women were killed by husbands, ex-husbands, or boyfriends; 50 women were killed by family members such as their father, brother, or son; 17 women were killed by friends or co-workers, eight by in-laws, nine by neighbours. One woman was killed by an employee's son, four by relatives.

A firearm was used in 165 cases, sharp objects in 92, strangulation in 11 – six women were beaten to death and five thrown from the balcony, three were burnt alive, two were stoned to death, and one was run over with a vehicle.

In 87 cases men killed because the women "wanted to break up or did not want to make peace"; in another 10, jealousy was the main motive, and in seven, economic necessity was the excuse.

One woman was killed because she was annoying; another one "because she didn't care for his mother"; one woman because she said she had pain, and four others because they were noisy.

It should be noted that on 1 July 2021, Turkey pulled out of the Istanbul Convention, the international treaty against violence against women signed in 2011 in the country's main business centre.

President Recep Tayyip Erdo─čan’s decision sparked outrage and was condemned by several advocacy groups and Western governments, including several allied countries.

The Convention commits its members to prevent and prosecute domestic violence, while promoting equality between the sexes and equal opportunities for men and women.