“Spring will come for women too”
Opposition’s joint candidate and CHP (Republican People’s Party) leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu addressed Turkey’s women in a video on Twitter to give insurances to both secular and religious groups saying “Mr. Kemal will never let you lose your political gains.”
"Spring will come for women too, Mr. Kemal says," he said, referring to his election campaign slogan and he criticized the way basic women's rights were used as a "radical element" for political gains.
"The women fail to comprehend the notion of basic women's rights being put up for a vote. The presentation of their rights as a political bargaining chip has left them horrified and aghast at the hands of radical elements."
Kilicdaroglu was talking about the recent discussion over Islamist Welfare Party’s request from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) to abolish a law that protects women against domestic violence as a precondition for its support in the elections.
Kilicdaroglu also emphasized his support for the religous women:
"Especially to young conservative women, they advertised that 'if Mr. Kemal comes, you will lose your rights'. They did it for months and days. They constantly lied, slandered, and made false accusations. And those who did this sat at the bargaining table and left you halfway for 3-5 votes." He added that if he were to be elected president, he would make efforts to improve women's rights and the country would be stronger if women were empowered.
“I would like to underline that Mr. Kemal will never, ever let you lose your gains. Mr. Kemal never, ever negotiates over the rights of women and children. I couldn't sit at that table and then go home and look at my wife and my daughters. Look, whatever they slandered me about or defamed me, they always committed those crimes themselves. They discussed the achievements of the young conservative woman themselves.”
Kilicdaroglu in the video also proposed a list of pledges to increase women’s rights in Turkey.
He said if he won, he would propose social security for housewives, an increase in the number of childcare centers, incentives to increase women's participation in employment, propose to pave the way for women entrepreneurs and a minimum requirement for equal representation of women on the board of directors in publicly traded companies.