Istanbul sees spike in child sexual abuse cases in last two years

The number of child sexual abuse cases filed in Istanbul has increased in the last two years, according to a report prepared by the Istanbul Bar Association. A total of 5,254 abuse cases were launched in 2018 and 2019 in the province, said the report.

Istanbul has experienced a spike in cases of child sexual abuse during the last two years, according to a report prepared by the Children's Rights Commission of the Istanbul Bar Association.

During the period of 2014-2019, the Istanbul Bar Association has assigned lawyers to represent 10,844 child sexual abuse victims during the investigation process, daily Cumhuriyet reported on Feb. 9. Of this figure, 5,590 sexual abuse cases were filed over the three years of 2014-2017, whereas the rest of the 5,254 cases were filed in 2018 and 2019.

Some 80 percent of the child sexual abuse victims were girls, and 20 percent were boys, said the Istanbul Bar Association's report. Some 50 percent of the abused girls were aged between 12-15, whereas 55 percent of the abused boys were younger than 12.

The report also included data on children who were exposed to other kinds of abuse such as physical, neglect or emotional maltreatment.

During the 2014-2019 period, the bar association has assigned lawyers to represent a total of 95, 959 children for all abuse cases during the investigation process. The report said that again during the last two years, Istanbul has seen an increase in the number of abused children. Also, in 2019, some 80 percent of abused children were aged between 12-18.