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 19 years old Kurdish girl shot in Turkey

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Number of posts : 21
Age : 46
Localisation : Lille
Organisation : Solidarité Irak
Registration date : 2006-08-20

PostSubject: 19 years old Kurdish girl shot in Turkey   Tue Dec 12, 2006 12:57 am

19 years old Kurdish girl shot in Turkey

Monday, December 11, 2006
KurdishMedia.com

Translated by A Eskandari from different Swedish newspapers

Tugba Tunc, who is a Swedish citizen (of a Kurdish origin), was shot in the Doga Park in Turkey in a suspected honour killing attempt.

Tugba came to Sweden from Turkey when she was very young. She was helping her parents to look after three other children. She could not finish her high-school studies because of the problems at home. Then her family asked her to go back to Turkey and marry her cousin.

On 21st April 2006 she flew to Turkey along with one of her brothers. When relatives put pressure on Tugba to marry her cousin, she refused, and as a consequence she was threatened with death.

On 5th June 2006 she arranged a date with her boyfriend in a secret place in the park. There she was shot with a shotgun and fell into coma for two weeks. Unfortunately, her travel insurance expired just the day before shooting and she was in a very difficult financial situation.

A close friend of hers, a Swedish girl named Stina Bengtsson made a big effort to find legal and financial assistance to her. Tugba’s uncle did his best to help her too; he borrowed money and provided 65 blood bags. The Swedish foreign ministry agreed to give her a loan in order to cover her hospital expenses in Turkey. But there was not enough money to pay for her flight back to Sweden. Her friend Stina succeeded in convincing the insurance company to help Tugba on a humanitarian basis.

On 29th June Tugba flew home. But she has been in trouble since, as it is very difficult for her to pay back the loan and she needs legal aid which the Swedish authorities deny her.

In the middle of November this case was highlighted by the Swedish State radio and then by other mass media. At present the Swedish media are very engaged and criticize severely the authorities’ reaction to Tugba’s case. One of the papers reveals that according to the current Swedish law if a Swedish female citizen is raped or exposed to sexual violence abroad, she is entitled to all kinds of help. But what about a citizen who almost loses her life in a violent accident?

In a meantime the two suspects who attacked Tugba were released from a prison in Turkey. Stina and the journalists questioned four different ministers about the case and each minister shifted the responsibility to someone else.

Tugba is paralyzed and she is bound to a wheelchair. The Swedish television channel TV4 took up the question and invited Tugba along with Elisabeth Fritz, a very famous lawyer, originally from Lebanon, who has been helping victims of honour related violence, to a live morning program on 8th November. One Swedish man who has been engaged in a feminist movement watched this program at his hotel room in Stockholm. Touched by Tugba’s story, he immediately took a taxi to the television station and met with Tugba and Elisabeth Fritz straight after the program. He promised to raise funds to pay her loan and other expenses.

The mass media coverage of the Tugba’s case made the authorities to reverse their decision and they offered her legal aid.

A trial was due on 30th November in Turkey. The lawyer has asked the trial to be postponed as she wants the Swedish police to hear Tugba’s statement. Tugba will not be traveling to Turkey because of her safety reasons.

Tugba is still in the hospital. She told one journalist that two days before the shooting her aunt told her:” you either marry my son or die” (I would rather die, she answered). It is believed that she is silent about the details of the event, because she worries about her uncle (father’s brother). The uncle has been very kind and helpful and she is afraid if she speaks up her uncle may end up in trouble.
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