chapter  8
Democratization in Turkey from a gender perspective
WithPINAR I
Pages 23

At a meeting with 60 representatives from women’s organizations on July 18, 2010, Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdog˘an said: ‘I do not believe in equality between women and men. Sorry! I believe only in equal opportunity for women and men. How can they be equal? Women and men are different, they complement each other.’1 Erdog˘an’s statement had a shocking and a freezing effect on women’s organizations-—as captured by Cumhuriyet’s headline ‘Words Like Ice’ (Kaplan 2010). Despite the criticisms and protests that followed, Erdog˘an repeated his statement at a campaign rally in July 2010, and at a party meeting in October 2010 (Oral 2010; Tuksal 2010).2