Problem of child marriages solved, real problem LGBT: Erdogan
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan claimed on Monday that a recently exposed incident involving a very young child being placed in the hands of a 29-year-old man and eventually married off by a father who is a senior member of a religious community has been under the monitor of state institutions "from the very beginning."
Erdogan also claimed that the incident was an isolated one, and that the country was actually faced with more crucial problems like bad influences of the social media and LGBTQIA+ communities.
Speaking at an event organized by the women's wing of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), Erdogan said:
"We have never approved, never approve marrying off our daughters before they have physically and emotionally reached maturity, marrying them off before legal age (...) Sexual abuse of children is never acceptable, neither humanely, nor Islamically. Our institutions have monitored the recently exposed incident from the very beginning, carefully followed the necessary processes."
Claiming that the problem of underage marriages has been essentially solved in Turkey except for a very few incidents, Erdogan said that the country was now faced with new problems.
"For example, we observe that our children go through a serious disorientation, reflected both in their outer appearances and their relations with others, caused by the internet, particularly the social media, and some television shows," he said.
He added that another "real problem that should be addressed" is "pervert movements."
"That thing called LGBT, it is unfamiliar to us," he said. "Is it familiar to CHP [main opposition Republican People's Party]? Yes it is. Is it familiar to the smaller opposition? Yes it is. Do they walk together? Yes they do."