marriage and divorce

Coronavirus quarantine multiplies divorces in Turkey

Government confinement measures have multiplied divorce petitions in Istanbul by 4, and incidents of gender violence by 40%. Turkey has some 30,000 coronavirus infections.

The quarantine measures enacted by the government in Turkey to deal with the coronavirus pandemic are beginning to make its effects felt on a social level, as having to spend more time at home living together has caused the number of divorces to multiply by four, while cases of gender violence have increased by 40%.

In statements collected by various Turkish media, Engin Kara, a lawyer by profession, confirmed that the number of divorce requests that have come to his office in recent weeks has multiplied by four compared to the requests they received in January, as many marriages are now forced to spend more time together and in a closed environment.

This phenomenon has also occurred in countries such as China, the country of origin of the COVID-19 pandemic, where divorce petitions have also skyrocketed as marriage registration agencies in that country returned to normal operations.

Kara believes that the social consequences of the coronavirus will be more evident in the coming months, but stresses that the increase in divorce petitions shows that it is already affecting the lives of people on a psychological and family level.

Cases of gender violence, also on the rise

Another consequence is that although the crime rate has decreased by 40%, cases of gender violence have increased up to 40% in Istanbul, due to the fact that many women are now forced to live longer with their partners or their abusers.

Specifically, during the month of March, 2,493 incidents of gender-based violence were registered in Istanbul, while in the same month of 2019 only 1,804 cases were reported, representing an increase of 38.2% coinciding with the confinement measures decreed in Turkey to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Meanwhile, Turkish Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gül reported on Monday that investigations have been opened against 750 people in 66 of the country’s 81 provinces for violating the confinement measures decreed by the government; likewise, another 568 people are being investigated by the prosecution for spreading false news related to the pandemic through social networks.

According to the latest data released Monday night by Turkey’s Health Minister Fahrettin Koca, the number of coronavirus cases detected in the country now stands at 30,217, while 649 deaths have been recorded to date. In addition 1,415 patients are admitted to intensive care units because of the disease, while 1,326 have been discharged so far.