Tag Archives: Gender

Through a 30-day of struggle, Derya keeps asking for resettlement from UNHCR

photo: Woman Defence “telling her you are not alone and helpless, we turned our back to male violence and our face to Derya”

Derya, a woman asylum-seeker from Iran and a survivor of SGBV has been demonstrating in front of UNHCR Ankara office since one month now. UNHCR has already left the authority of refugee status determination totally to Directorate General of Migration Management on September. However, many refugees like Derya has filed their asylum applications earlier to UNHCR and expecting to receive attention and possibly a positive answer of resettlement to a third country from the international institution. Derya’s resistance has been brought to public attention in Turkey through some news covers and solidarity attempts of feminist groups. Here we put together Derya’s story through the humanitarian lawyers and her own account.

Accoding to Dicle Var from Evrensel News, Derya’s request for resettlement is neglected by UNHCR although she has fled from her family’s violence in Iran, and is claiming to not have life security in Turkey as well. As her sit-in protest in front of UNHCR has been brought to media, lawyers from Refugee Rights Center of Ankara Bar Association and International Women Solidarity Association (UKDD) took action for her. However the lawyers were let neither in the UNHCR building, nor to negotiate with the authorities, they were instead referred to Human Resource Development Foundtion (IKGV, a local implementing partner of UNHCR). The officers from IKGV confirmed that they are following Derya’s case, and added that she has psychological problems and she has to stay in Turkey and do the things that are necessary to adapt to normal life. The lawyer Çelik (from UKDD) condemned the attitude of the IKGV and pointed that such institutions do not have a women’s rights based approach towards women refugees, therefore she will keep on supporting Derya’s struggle and bring it to agenda in different platforms. Continue reading Through a 30-day of struggle, Derya keeps asking for resettlement from UNHCR

Queer refugees on Lesvos are crying out for help

Via The New Arab – Freelance journalist Matt Broomfield describes the situation of LGBTIQ refugees on Lesvos Island. Hundreds of queer refugees who came to Europe to live a free life now face the same discrimination as they did in their home countries: by police, the asylum service and other migrants forced to live behind barbed wire.


The self-organized group Lesvos LGBTIQ+ Refugee Solidarity supports queer refugees in group meetings and in terms of accommodation and legal advice.

For their work, they collect donations through: borderline-europe e.V. GLS Bank, Bochum IBAN: DE11 4306 0967 4005 7941 00 BIC:GENODEM1GLS Purpose: LGBTIQ Lesvos

Via The New Arab – From the gay Iraqi who saw Isis militants throw his lover from the tallest building in Mosul to the couple who escaped persecution to rendezvous for the first time in a refugee camp, each of the LGBTQI+ refugees trapped on the Greek island of Lesvos could fill a book with their own personal stories.

Continue reading Queer refugees on Lesvos are crying out for help

GREVIO’s 2018 Report on Turkey is Out

See the full report here.

Group of Experts on Action against Violence against Women and Domestic Violence (GREVIO) launched the 2018 baseline evaluation report on legislative and other measures giving effect to the provisions of the Istanbul Convention (Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence against Women and Domestic Violence) for Turkey.

The report overall emphasizes that the prevailing context in Turkey with the draining of resources in civil service sector and increasing anti-terror measures following the failed coup attempt is rather unpropitious for the fulfillment of women’s right to live free from violence; and therefore the many legislative and other gains achieved hitherto at the cause against violence against women in Turkey, may risk regressing.

The report also has a particular section on Migration and Asylum, in which the issues of “family residence permit”, “gender-based asylum claims” and the principle of “non-refoulment” were elaborated on. Thereby, the group of experts call on the Turkish authorities to take necessary measures to provide better protection to women victims of violence regardless of their status of residence, and to develop gender-sensitive procedures, guidelines and services which allow all women to have access to registration and protection mechanisms.

For the full-text of GREVIO’s baseline evaluation report on Turkey, please refer to this link.

Three female migrants found murdered near Greece-Turkey border

Via The Guardian – Two women and a girl believed to be migrants have been found dead with their throats slashed near Greece’s north-eastern border with Turkey, Greek authorities said.

Evros river
In the first half of 2018, more than 10,000 migrants and refugees arrived in Greece from Turkey by crossing the Evros river. Photograph: Alkis Konstantinidis/Reuters

The victims appeared to be of North African, Middle Eastern or Asian origin, but their nationalities and identities were unknown, police said. An initial examination of the bodies suggested the three were killed about four days earlier, coroner Pavlos Pavlidis said on Wednesday.

Continue reading Three female migrants found murdered near Greece-Turkey border

The L.G.B.T. Refugees in Turkey Who Refuse to Be Forgotten

Riot police crack down on an L.G.B.T. rally in Istanbul, in 2016. Under the provisions of the country’s state of emergency, protest is effectively banned.
Photograph by Ozan Kose / AFP / Getty

Via The New Yorker – When you are a refugee, you learn all about the hierarchy of compassion. There are the people from war-torn countries—refugees from humanitarian catastrophes so enormous that they upend the world’s imagination, such as those who have escaped from Syria. There are people who have fled a sudden campaign of violence and hatred, such as the gay men who have been escaping from Chechnya for the past year. And then there is you: unlucky enough to have suffered the kind of misfortune that can’t seem to hold onto a headline. From the officers of U.N.H.C.R.—the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the agency that runs refugee-resettlement operations around the world—what you hear is this: “There is no country for you.” Continue reading The L.G.B.T. Refugees in Turkey Who Refuse to Be Forgotten

On forced and second marriage of Syrian women in Turkey

Deutsche Welle in Turkish reports about the issue of forced and second marriage of Syrian women in Turkey, a phenomenon which started to be widespread in Turkey. A website called “Syrian Women” is giving advice to Turkish men on how to find and marry Syrian women.

“Syrian women wanting to marry – what are Syrian women like? – how are Syrian women dressed?” The website is full of sexist stereotypes of women, who had to migrate from Syria Turkey:

“Syrian women are delicate beings like our women. The number of  young men who want to get married to Syrian women has increased and the desire of married men who want to be with Syrian women has increased as well. Since Syrian women do not set official marriage conditions, men can start living with them”.

Continue reading On forced and second marriage of Syrian women in Turkey

“We are not looking for providing jobs at home. We are aiming to create a safe environment or safe jobs outside of our houses.”

Syrian Women’s multiple burden at the labour market and at home.

by Rejane Herwig

Often imagined to be Syrian women’s only profession in Turkey: sewing at home.

The living conditions of Syrians in Turkey are for a majority very poor and tend to have a negative effect on a psychological as well as a physical level. Looking at those through a gender lens renders visible that such circumstances often have even more severe effects on women. Continue reading “We are not looking for providing jobs at home. We are aiming to create a safe environment or safe jobs outside of our houses.”