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About Yakin Ertürk

Yakin Ertürk was the UN Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women (SRVAW) 2003-2009, and until recently Professor of Sociology at Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey. She also undertook numerous international assignments, including as a member of the International Independent Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic by the UNHRC (Sept 2011- March 2012). She is a member of the Board of the Asylum and Migration Research Center in Ankara, and served on the Council of  Europe, Committee for the  Prevention of Torture (CPT).

Articles by Yakin Ertürk

This week’s front page editor


Francesc Badia i Dalmases is Editor and Director of democraciaAbierta.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

A move to set free child sex abusers: in the name of “our culture”

Recent law reform initiatives on sexual crimes against children in Turkey reveal the growing danger for women and girls, and the need to interrogate the myths and biases underlying the “our culture” discourse.

Global Femicide Watch

Dubravka Šimonović, the UN Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women, explains to Yakin Erturk why she is calling on all States to participate in the newly established global 'Femicide Watch'.

Ghana: women at war in a country at peace

The absence of war does not necessarily imply peace for women. The binary opposites of war and peace obscure the continuum of violence women experience as a result of patriarchal gender structures.

Sunday March 8th 2015

The missing link in women's human rights

Gender incompetent policies and hierarchical understandings of rights dominate global economic governance programmes. Integrating a feminist political economy into the analysis reveals the interconnections of structural inequalities that underlie women’s subordination.

Iran: a 'bloody stain' on the nation

The war on women continues to manifest itself in different forms and intensity globally; tarnishing all societies with a ‘bloody stain’. In Iran, hard-liner interpretations of Islamic principles dictate gender norms, violation of which can be fatal.

Due diligence for women's human rights: transgressing conventional lines

On international human rights day, Yakin Ertürk discusses the new vulnerabilities faced by women, including refugee womenand the new opportunities for remedy offered by the international human rights system.

The quest for gender-just peace: from impunity to accountability

Yakin Erturk reflects on the six years she spent working as the UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women, and argues that in order to build a gender- just peace, dis-empowering patriarchy and engaging with the feminist agenda of empowering women must be the guiding principle for all peace initiatives.

A call to engender Turkey’s peace process

Turkey’s agenda for peace aims to overcome the decades-old Kurdish question and raise democratic standards. While welcoming this initiative, Yakin Ertürk questions whether the end of conflict will bring peace to women if gender equality issues are not adequately addressed

Turmoil in Syria: failed “Arab spring” or sectarian nightmare?

Although inspired by the movements of the Arab spring, the protests in Syria have degenerated into increasingly  violent and militarised conflict with sectarian overtones that threaten the rights of Syrians at large. The means employed in the resolution of the crisis will determine the outcome Yakin Ertürk tells Deniz Kandiyoti

Culture versus rights dualism: a myth or a reality?

Women’s human rights discourse and movements have become entangled within a culture-versus-rights dualism. Yakin Ertürk argues that this is a false dualism which serves both private patriarchy and public patriarchy of neo-liberal globalisation

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