Turkish couples getting divorced increased by 10.9 percent in 2018

The number of Turkish couples who got divorced increased by 10.9 percent in one year, reaching 142,488 in 2018 from 128,111 in 2017, according to figures of the Turkish Statistical Institute (TUIK) released on Friday.

The number of couples who got married decreased by 2.9 percent in the same period and fell to 553,202, TUIK said. 

The crude marriage rate, the number of marriages occurring among the population of a given geographical area during a given year, was 6.8 in 2018, while the crude divorce rate was 1.75.

The mean age at first marriage was 27.8 for males and 24.8 for females in 2018, TUIK said. 

The divorce figures came at a time when the Turkish government and the government-affiliated civil society organisations have stepped up efforts to remove gender equality measures in the Turkish system to replace them with measures focused more on the protection of the family. 

Both Turkey’s Education Ministry and the Higher Education Council cancelled their gender equality projects this month, following severe criticism from pro-pro-government media. 

While the pro-government media blames Turkish legislation protecting women’s rights, particularly rights to alimony, for increasing divorce rate, secular Sözcü newspaper said it was a result of the economic crisis in the country. 

Meanwhile, Syrian brides took first place among foreign brides, in 2018, followed by Azeri and German brides, while German grooms ranked first with 34.1 percent among foreign nationals marrying to Turkish women.