Turkey, Politics

Islamic values against gender discrimination: Erdogan

There is no discrimination against women in Islam, Turkish culture, President Erdogan tells int'l women summit

Islamic values against gender discrimination: Erdogan


The religion of Islam does not justify any gender discrimination against women, Turkey's president said on Friday.

Addressing the ‘3rd Women and Justice Summit’ in Istanbul, Recep Tayyip Erdogan underlined the equality of woman and man in Islam.

“As members of a faith [Islam] which sees each human being, beyond all their differences from gender to color, as a creature by Allah, it is not possible for us to discriminate against women,” Erdogan said.

The president praised women as indispensable to the family and business life.

Erdogan said the family is shaped with the joint efforts of woman and man in Turkish culture and Islam.

“An understanding that isolates women from business life and men from home strikes the family concept at the very beginning,” he said.

The president also said Turkey should apply to its own history and culture in an effort to improve its position on human, woman, children, and animal rights; not that of western countries, which are shaken with big discussions on them.

Erdogan accused the west of commoditization of women, recalling that women were sold and forced to work during centuries.

“It is not surprising for us that the mentality that used women as a commodity in the past uses the women with the same concept of meta under the guise of equality today,” he said.

Active participation of Turkish women in business life

The president also mentioned the role of Turkish women in politics, academics and many other areas.

He said 104 women perform their duty as lawmakers at the 600-seat parliament of Turkey.

"This figure is 17.5 percent of the Turkish parliament. It set a new record, though not enough,” Erdogan stated.

The president said the rate for participation of Turkish women into labor force went up during the rule of his Justice and Development (AK) Party since late 2002.

"In Turkish universities, almost half of academics -- at least 44 percent -- are women,” he said, adding the same rate applies to architects and lawyers.

“More than 20 percent of Turkish diplomats are women as well," he added.

Erdogan said that there are now 9.1 million women bolstering Turkey's power in business life.

Reporting by Andac Hongur, Berk Ozkan and Lale Bildirici:Writing by Can Erozden

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