Turkey's AKP wants to release rapists if they marry victim

Erdogan's party accused of legalizing child marriage

18 November, 20:48

    ISTANBUL - A draft law presented by the ruling AKP party under President Recep Tayyip Erdogan would release those convicted of child sexual abuse if they agree to marry the victim and the action is consensual. Presented on Thursday night in Parliament, the draft law will be discussed again on Tuesday despite firm opposition from CHP social democrats and MHP nationalists.

    The pro-Kurdish party HDP is not taking part in the chamber activities to protest the arrest of some of their MPs for alleged links with the outlawed PKK.

    Many NGOs say that the regulation would worsen the already existing problem of ''baby brides'' in Turkey. The proposal, which aims to suspend trials and sentences for child abuse, sparked strong protest from the public. Thousands of Twitter users have shared their indignation by posting with a hashtag that means ''rape cannot be legitimized''. 

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