Duvar English

Turkey on July 21 mourned the killing of Pınar Gültekin by her ex-boyfriend Cemal Metin Avcı, as femicide toll continues its dramatic increase in the country.

The burned body of Gültekin, a 27-year-old university student, was found in a forest area in the Menteşe district of the Aegean province of Muğla, prompting outrage on social media.

The young woman had been missing since July 16 and her family had sought help from authorities after being unable to reach her.

Security forces then started technical and physical tracking of her 32-year-old ex-boyfriend Avcı and detained him late on July 20 at his home after noticing that his statements contradict each other.

They also watched security footage in the area and saw that Avcı bought two bottles of petrol from a nearby gas station.

Avcı, who denied committing the murder, confessed to the crime after watching the footage and said that he initially beat Gültekin because she didn’t want to get together again and killed her when she passed out.

Cemal Metin Avcı.

He then took the body to a forest area and burned it in a garbage bin, before covering it up with concrete.

Security forces located the body following Avcı’s testimony early on July 21.

Gültekin is the latest woman to be murdered by men in Turkey. Femicides are a grave problem in the country, where women get killed or beaten every single day.

Data shared by We Will Stop Femicides Platform reveals the extent of the problem, with at least 146 women killed in the first six months of 2020, 474 in 2019, 440 in 2018, 409 in 2017, 328 in 2016, 303 in 2015, 294 in 2014 and 237 in 2013.

While women continue to get killed on a daily basis, the sentences given to men are far from being deterrent. Women’s rights groups say that the increasing violence against women cases stem from the government’s policies of protecting men.

The most recent example to it is the government’s willingness to withdraw from the Istanbul Convention, which aims to combat violence against women.

We Will Stop Femicides Platform shared a footage of Gültekin and said, “She could have been smiling today if she wasn’t murdered.”

In his testimony, Avcı, who is married, blamed Gültekin – a practice common for men who murder women.

“She threatened to let my wife know about the relationship. She was asking for money. I killed her in a moment of rage,” Avcı reportedly said.

Family, Labor and Social Services Minister Zehra Zümrüt Selçuk said that the ministry will also take part in the case “in order for the murderer to get the heaviest punishment.”

As of 6 p.m. July 21, some 716,000 tweets were sent with the hashtag #pınargültekin.