Turkey: UN Expert Committee Releases Concluding Report on Women’s Rights


The UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW Committee) recently released its concluding observations on the seventh periodic report of Turkey. The Committee reviews state implementation of the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women and makes recommendations in a number of areas, including violence against women, government, education, employment, and healthcare.

Of particular concern in Turkey are the prejudices against and insecure living conditions of Kurdish women and Syrian refugees who are often exposed to greater inequalities and sexual violence due to their marginalized ethnic status. The Committee noted the existence of problematic laws that legalize virginity tests even when women refuse to consent. Also of concern, the Turkish Penal Code does not specifically prohibit “domestic violence,” and honor killings remain prevalent across Turkey.

The committee recommends that Turkey continue to increase resources for government officials, judges, prosecutors, and law enforcement to achieve international standards in the protection and promotion of women’s human rights.


Compiled from: CEDAW, Concluding observations on the seventh periodic report of TurkeyUN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (July 21, 2016).