On November 5 we came down to breakfast in our hotel in Ankara to hear the news that police had staged overnight raids on the homes of nine MPs from the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), the party’s leaders were under arrest, and the government had shut down Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp.
In order to develop strategic litigation in the area of reproductive rights it is essential to assess the situation of Romani women in the communities and the discrimination they face. Unlike segregation in schools or social housing, reproductive rights violations against Roma are always intersectional: they thrive on the likelihood that Romani women will not assert, or even recognise, the oppression they experience. The ERRC has helped shine a light on forced sterilisations, but it is far from the form of reproductive rights violation Romani women experience because they are Roma – and women.
By Sinem Hun
External Legal Consultant in Turkey, ERRC
It was a cold November night in 2012 when a close friend called me and said: “look at the internet”. At that time, I was in London and doing my masters in human rights after two years of field experience as an activist lawyer in Turkey, mainly working on LGBTI issues. Before leaving Turkey, I had been dealing with how to litigate hate speech, a problem which is still prevalent in nearly each sector and institution in Turkey.
Two conflict zones currently make the news in Europe: Syria and Ukraine. People demonstrate empathy for those caught in war-torn areas and for the plight of refugees, in particular of the millions of refugees from Syria stranded in Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and even Iraq. In general, empathy for the refugees diminishes the closer they come to Western Europe. In particular, when the refugees belong to Roma or Roma-related groups, the diminishing empathy very quickly turns into antipathy.