Turkey’s HDP investigates lawmaker over domestic violence accusation

Turkey’s pro-Kurdish opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP)'s women assembly has announced that a lawmaker was referred to the party’s disciplinary board over accusations of domestic violence against his wife.

In a statement released on Friday, HDP Women’s Assembly said the party, following a preliminary investigation on Thursday, launched an official probe into eastern Muş province lawmaker Mensur Işık with a demand for his expulsion.

HDP has suspended all duties and authorisations for Işık, whose wife Ebru Işık had gone to the police with a black eye on Thursday, as a precaution while the investigation continues.

“Wherever it comes from, we will never give male violence a pass,” the Women’s Assembly said in a statement. “We will continue to raise our voice against all violence as we say women fight against organised patriarchy everywhere.”

“We do not forgive male violence. We are clear on violence against women,” HDP Spokeswoman Ebru Günay said in a separate statement today.

“HDP’s women deputies who cry about violence should first look into their own group, to the back rows,” ruling Justice and Development Party Deputy Group Speaker Özlem Zengin said in a tweet on Thursday.

“It is fateful that you would use male violence, which all women should stand against, as a tool in politics like this,” HDP Deputy Group Speaker Meral Danış Beştaş said in response, adding that the immediate investigation the party had launched was underway in an effective manner.

Ebru Işık had petitioned a restraining order against her husband on Thursday, and was given a battery report by a public hospital showing a black eye. In her statement to the police, she said the couple had a fight late at night over her wanting a divorce, and that Mensur Işık punched her.

According to Ebru Işık, as cited by pro-government A Haber television, the HDP deputy locked the doors after the fight so she would not go to a hospital or the police, and the woman was only able to go some 12 hours later when she had too much pain.

Ebru Işık later withdrew her complaint and said she hit a cupboard.