Changing Turkey’s Laws to Improve Women’s Rights


A concerted campaign by women’s and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) organisations succeeded in achieving a revolutionary change in the philosophy and content of the Turkish Penal Code on issues of gender and sexuality. The new Code allows women greater sexual and bodily autonomy, for example by criminalising marital rape, and prompted a groundbreaking shift in public and social attitudes. This Research Summary shows how the campaigners successfully achieved thirty five progressive amendments to the new code despite the opposition of the ruling religious conservative government.


IDS Research Summary, 2 pp.

Changing Turkey’s Laws to Improve Women’s Rights

Published 1 January 2008