“We Will Stop Femicide”, A Platform Fighting against Gender-Based Violence

Onal G., Işil Ülman F. Y.

EACME 2017 Annual Conference. 'Justice in Health Care - Values in Conflict', Barcelona, Spain, 7 - 09 September 2017

  • Publication Type: Conference Paper / Unpublished
  • City: Barcelona
  • Country: Spain
  • Acibadem Mehmet Ali Aydinlar University Affiliated: Yes


EACME Conference, Barcelona 7-9 September 2017

Abstract for Oral Presentation


“We Will Stop Femicide”,

A Platform Fighting against Gender-Based Violence

Gulsum Onal, Yesim Isil Ulman

Violence against women is now well recognized as a public health problem and human rights violation of worldwide significance. It is an important risk factor for women’s ill health, with far reaching consequences for both their physical and mental health (1). World Health Organization (WHO) defines violence against women as ‘‘acts or threats of acts intended to hurt or make women suffer physically, sexually or psychologically, and which affect women because they are women or affect women disproportionally’’(2). According to the Convention on Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) (1979) ‘‘….any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life’’ should be ended on the basis for realizing equality between women and men through ensuring women's equal access to, and equal opportunities in, political and public life.

Yet, this issue has aggravated far more than enjoying rights in political and public life recently and transformed into a global problem threatening right to life of women who demand for their own fundamental rights and freedoms. By Istanbul Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence (2011), Council of Europe condemned all forms of violence against women and domestic violence; recognized that violence against women is a manifestation of historically unequal power relations between women and men, which have led to domination over, and discrimination against women by men and to the prevention of the full advancement of women (3).

As this is also a heated debate in Turkey, a civilian platform, “We Will Stop Femicide” (WSF) was established in 2009 so as to draw attention of the public on this issue and to produce solutions in order to overcome this human right violation (4). The Platform works compatibly with the Istanbul Convention and it aims to stop all forms of violence against women and domestic violence; to protect women from violations of right to life as well as all fundamental rights and freedoms. WSF mainly activates to keep harmed women alive, to give victims shelter and humanitarian aid, to make them accede legal support.  As a matter of fact, WSF has taken part as a stakeholder in enactment of the “Protection of Family and Prevention of Violence against Women Law” (No. 6284) and urges the Parliament and governmental bodies to monitor the requirements of law for the benefit and protection of wronged and mistreated women. According to the annually kept records of the Platform, the number of women who were murdered on these reasons is 328 in 2016 (5).

This paper will deal with the activities and functions of WSF, as an exemplary NGO to fight for women’s rights by focusing on its social determinants, by alerting authorities for prevention of gender-based crimes, by analyzing this human right issue within the scope of universal bioethical principles, human rights and dignity.

Key Words: Violence against women, gender based violence, human rights, dignity, the Council of Europe’s Istanbul Convention


1)       Krantz G, Garcia-Moreno C, Violence against women, A Glossary, J Epidemiol Community Health 2005;59:818–821.

2)       Violence against Women Definition and scope of the problem, July 1987  http://www.who.int/gender/violence/v4.pdf (Accessed on 14.02.2016).

3)       Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence, 12 April 2011, https://rm.coe.int/CoERMPublicCommonSearchServices/DisplayDCTMContent?documentId=090000168046031c (Accessed on 14.02.2016).

4)       “Stop Violence Against Women” (Kadin Cinayetlerini Durduracagiz!) Official Internet Page,  http://www.kadincinayetlerinidurduracagiz.net/hakkimizda (Accessed on 14.02.2016).

5)       “Stop Violence Against Women” 2015 Annual Report http://kadincinayetlerinidurduracagiz.net/veriler/2551/kadin-cinayetlerini-durduracagiz-platformu-2015-yili-raporu (Accessed on 14.02.2016).