Women in Politics: Turkey, Greece, and Italy Essay

2285 Words 10 Pages
Women in Politics: Turkey, Greece, and Italy


?Turkey?s recently elected Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan spoke a congratulatory message to Turkish women at the beginning of December, 2003, on the 69th anniversary of women?s suffrage and the right for women to stand in elections in Turkey.? Erdogan echoed Kemal Ataturk?s message from decades ago that women and men must be seen as equal parts of a society before a nation can develop.? ?Turkish women have held a respected place in Turkish society throughout history,? he said.? ?Thanks to this respect accorded to women, they retain a significant place in society as individuals.?[1]

?Women?s suffrage came relatively early to Turkey compared with many other countries
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Since that time, the ratio of women in parliament has generally dropped but may have been on the rise in recent years.[4]

?Many modern Turkish women are outraged that no progress has been made in the male-dominated political realm since the beginning of the Turkish republic.? The small percentage of women elected into the Turkish Parliament rests at only 2.6 percent, less than what many women hoped for from the last election.[5]? ?If you talk to Turkish men they won?t accept that there is inequality,? says Zeneb Ghosh, a recent candidate in Istanbul.? ?In academic and business life (equality) may be true, but not in politics.?[6]? Bercak Keskin explains that female members of parliament have to have more qualifications in comparison with male colleagues and writes that more times than not, these female politicians grew up in families already associated with politics.[7]

?Few Turkish political parties focus on women?s rights and support female candidates, but groups representing women?s interests are fighting to change this.? Hundreds of associations for women, many of which have been limited to charities in the past, encourage women?s involvement in key domestic and international political issues.? Recent issues recently addressed by women?s associations include the treatment of Kurds in parts of Turkey and Turkey?s

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