A wave of reaction has swept the Turkish Cypriot community after the brutal murders of two women in the space of just two days. The murders were acts of domestic violence with two wives being stabbed to death by their jealous husbands.
Following the murder of Burcu Okumus, 25, which took place on Tuesday, many NGOs, women and human rights organisations, and activists took to the streets. They first demonstrated in Famagusta on Wednesday against the rise of violence against women in Cyprus, Turkey and across the world.
Little did they know that just 48 hours later they would have to demonstrate against one more killing of a woman by her husband.
On Thursday afternoon, Gamze Pehlivan, 37, was murdered by her jealous husband Suat Asir following a heated argument.
On Friday morning groups and activists gathered outside the Labour office in the north, demonstrating against the murders and against violence against women in general.
Demonstrators carried banners and placards reading slogans like ‘Women murders are political,’ ‘The names are different, their story the same,’ ‘Burcu is alive,’ ‘We’re not mourning, we are revolting.’ They demanded from the administration authorities in the north to take measures to prevent more murders and acts of domestic violence from being repeated in the future.
Okumus was murdered in Famagusta on Tuesday, outside a café on a busy road after a heated argument with her husband. Pehlivan was murdered in Nicosia on Thursday also after an argument with her husband. Both women were stabbed to death.