Poverty Leading to More Violence And Crime

North Cyprus News - Woman - Violence

Tuesday, 19 September 2023

There has been an increase in violence, in particular against women and in the crime rate in general, largely because of the current economic situation, Kibris Postasi reports.

The President of the Bar Association Human Rights Committee Aslı Murat said that There are many reasons for violence and increasing crime rates in general. 

“Especially the current economic devastation, ever-deepening poverty, lack of control and supervision of the population in the country, and the fact that public services, from education to health and social services, have almost come to a deadlock, will inevitably lead to the deterioration of public order and an increase in crime rates“. he said. 

Increase in violence towards women

There has also been an increase in violence towards women, largely due to societal attitudes towards them, Murat said.

Recalling the recent murder of Kübra Aydın and the suicide of her killer and the murder of 16-year-old Zehie Helin Reessur in January, Murat stated that “The increase in acts of violence against women, in particular, is due to the pressure and interventions based on extreme conservative and religious exploitation, which have been felt very keenly lately“. The current government is encouraging all of these, she added.

Murat stated that, rather than empowering women, they are trying to embed mentalities in society that cause them to be pushed to the side  and discriminated against, and said, “In order to combat these, many different units of the state and civil society must work in cooperation“.

She also noted that this had not been achieved and said, “The punishments to be given after a crime is committed are of course important and I can say that the courts make serious evaluations at this point, but punishment is not enough“.

Murat went on to say that given that Kubra Aydin’s murderer committed suicide, the case will be closed. However, she pointed to concerns that violence against women are becoming the norm. 

Crime Prevention

The main duty of the state is to prevent crime before it occurs, Murat emphasised.

If we focus on it and implement solutions, there will be no violation of rights. Even though we live disconnected from the world due to our political structure, there are mechanisms within the administrative structure of the state that will help us be considered worldly“, she said.

Pointing out that a Gender Equality Department was established under the Ministry of Labour and Social Security in 2014, Murat noted that it had not been operated efficiently for years.

Murat said that currently, only the duty of providing legal aid and a hotline to women exposed to violence is fulfilled, and she also underlined that there is a Unit for Combating Violence Against Women, which is in the law and was activated within the police force in 2018.

Unfortunately, we do not face a political will that fulfils any of these. On the contrary, all of these are ignored”, said Murat, adding that although this is not difficult, a manager must be appointed to the department and then its activities can begin.

“As we always say, violence is a matter of mentality“,  Murat said.

Kibris Postasi

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