Pinar Ilkkaracan – Turkey

Linked with Women for Women’s Human Rights WWHR, and with Sexuality

Pinar Ilkkaracan is the Founding President of Women for Women’s Human Rights, a leading women’s advocacy organization in Turkey; and co-founder of The Coalition for Sexual and Bodily Rights in Muslim Societies, an international network of NGOs and academicians working towards promotion sexual and bodily rights in the Middle East/ North Africa and South/Southeast Asia. She has participated in various UN meetings and conferences on women’s human rights both as a member of the Turkish delegation and NGO representative … (full text).

… Ms. Ilkkaracan has authored numerous articles on violence against women, women in Muslim societies, women in Turkey, and women and sexuality. She edited the book, Women and Sexuality in Muslim Societies and co-authored a human rights manual, Human Rights and Legal Literacy Training Manual, which is used in community centers throughout Turkey to raise awareness of women’s reproductive rights. She is also a member of the Global Fund for Women’s Advisory Council, the International Advisory Committee of BRIDGE at the Institute of Development Studies (IDS), and the Religious Consultation on Population, Reproductive Health and Ethics. (full text).

She says: “The whole of Europe is focusing on honour crimes and we keep saying … honour crimes are the tip of the iceberg,” said Pinar Ilkkaracan, founder of Women for Women’s Human Rights.”We want quotas (for election candidates) … Fifty percent of the population are women and we’re asking for only 30 percent quotas, which is nothing”. (on Street News


Pinar Ilkkaracan – Turkey

She is founder of Women for Women’s Human Rights WWHR, and founder of Coalition for Sexual and Bodily Rights in Muslim Societies CSBR (named on Sexuality, (both showed on

Starting with spearheading legal reforms for full equality of women in her own country, psychotherapist and activist Pinar Ilkkaracan expanded her advocacy to networking in Muslim societies and promotion of women’s human rights at the United Nations level. Her organization, Women for Women’s Human Rights – New Ways (WWHR) pioneered reforms to anchor women’s full equality in the legal system and launched the most widespread human rights training program for women in Turkey. Her international coalition of 38 organizations from 14 countries, the Coalition for Sexual and Bodily Rights in Muslim Countries (CSBR), promotes sexual and reproductive health and rights as human rights. The coalition works to transform and eliminate customary practices and discriminatory attitudes leading to human rights violations … (full text).

… Pinar Ilkkaracan has voiced the issue of women’s sexuality in Muslim societies through the first ever compilation on the issue, and connected groups working on sexual rights in Muslim countries to create the first solidarity network in the field. At the UN level, she has successfully lobbied for advancements on contentious issues such as honor crimes, forced marriages and the rights of the girl child. She is also a prominent researcher and scholar who has published extensively on a wide array of issues including sexuality, violence, migration, and human rights education. What makes Pinar Ilkkaracan’s work unique and noteworthy is her ability to link local, national and international contexts, capacity to combine activism and professionalism and ability to employ a holistic proactive approach using diverse methods. (full text, 2007).

Find her and her publications on; on pipl; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

… The human rights training program she developed with WWHR, remains to be the most sustainable and widespread women’s human rights education program in the world. Pinar Ilkkaracan has led numerous successful advocacy initiatives in Turkey including the protection order law against domestic violence and the penal code reform to safeguard women’s sexual rights and effectively criminalize sexual violence. Pinar Ilkkaracan has voiced the issue of women’s sexuality in Muslim societies through the first ever compilation on the issue, and connected groups working on sexual rights in Muslim countries to create the first solidarity network in the field … (full text).

psikoterapist, araştırmacı ve insan hakları savunucusudur. Kadının İnsan Hakları – Yeni Çözümler Derneği’nin kurucu başkanı olan Pınar İlkkaracan, aynı zamanda Ortadoğu, Kuzey Afrika, Güney ve Güneydoğu Asya’daki önde gelen sivil toplum kuruluşları  ve akademisyenlerden oluşan Müslüman Toplumlarda Cinsel ve Bedensel Haklar Dayanışma Ağı’nın da kurucusudur. Sıcak Yuva Masalı: Aile İçi Şiddet ve Cinsel Taciz (1996), Müslüman Toplumlarda Kadın ve Cinsellik (2000), ve Orta Doğu’da Cinselliğin Çözümlenmesi (2008) gibi eserleri bulunmaktadır. Birleşmiş Milletler (BM) Kadının Statüsü oturumlarında Türkiye resmi delegasyonunda bir çok kere yer almış olan Pınar İlkkaracan, 2007 yılında Peter-Patricia Gruber Uluslararası Kadın Hakları’nı almıştır. (On AntiHomoFobi).

excerpts of some of 34 online sources for Pinar Ilkkaracan on

  • … Ilkkaracan supports the lifting of restrictions on Islamic head scarves at universities, which awaits the president’s approval.But she said talk among government officials of morality, as well as the Islamic code of conduct known by the Arabic term “adab,” could threaten freedom.
  • … She has built a regional network to increase the knowledge, solidarity, and advocacy on bodily integrity and human rights among women and men in Muslim societies.She is also a leading advocate for women’s human rights internationally.
  • New York, NY – Jul 18, 2007 (PRN): The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation today announces that Pinar Ilkkaracan of Istanbul, Turkey, and two organizations she helped establish, will receive its 2007 Gruber Women’s Rights Prize.Ms. Ilkkaracan, Women for Women’s Human Rights – New Ways (WWHR) and the Coalition for Sexual and Bodily Rights in Muslim Societies (CSBR) will share the unrestricted $500,000 (US) award.The Prize will be presented October 16, 2007, at a ceremony at the New York University School of Law …
  • Within a political environment not normally cited for advances in the status of women and their equal protection under law, Ms. Ilkkaracan has broken new ground in helping to effect radical and extensive reforms of Turkish law to bring equality to women in many areas. Through WWHR and CSBR – organizations she helped found – Ms. Ilkkaracan has played an important role in training Turkish women in legal literacy and helping to reform civil and penal codes to advance women’s rights in Turkey and internationally. The work of Ilkkaracan and the two organizations, with which she shares the Gruber Women’s Rights Prize, has brought about significant, tangible improvement in the day-to-day treatment of women under Turkish law. Pinar Ilkkaracan, head of an advocacy group called Women for Women’s Human Rights, said activists fought successfully to keep references to “morality” out of the new laws, arguing that the term is often linked to sexuality and religious values at the expense of women’s rights
  • … (etc. etc. – excerpts of some of 34 online sources for Pinar Ilkkaracan on

She writes:

  • … When do you think women and girls were finally deemed to have “human rights” by the world’s nations? The obvious answer might be 1948, when the United Nations adopted and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; or perhaps the 1970s, when the global feminist movement started changing the world? Well, it might come as a surprise to many – including younger generations of women in the global north, many of whom perceive feminism to be an outdated ideology – that it was only in the early 1990s that the United Nations finally recognised that women and girls also have human rights. If you consider this a bit late in history, you might be even more surprised to learn that the UN did so rather unwillingly, and only under the immense pressure of thousands of women and women’s groups both from the south and the north, initiated by a global women’s network coordinated by the Center for Women’s Global Leadership (CWGL). The network was determined to have women’s rights recognised as human rights by the world’s governments at the World Conference on Human Rights held in Vienna in 1993, and started to work towards this goal three years before this landmark event … (full text, Feb 26, 2007).
  • … On the first day of the year (2002), Turkey’s civil code recognized women as equal to men, the result of parliamentary revisions that have made family law in this predominately Muslim country among the most equitable in the world. Turkey is the world’s most secular Muslim nation, even forbidding women to wear the traditional head scarf in government offices and on campus. “This symbolizes a historic turning point,” the Ankara-based Flying Broom women’s rights group said in a statement. “Our country is closer to achieving the goal of equality between women and men.” At a time of increased debate on the rights of Muslim women, Turkey’s revised code is revolutionary compared to similar laws in other Muslim countries. It also highlights the complex interplay of politics and religion in the Middle East … (full text, Jan 13, 2002).
  • Türkiye´nin önde gelen kadın hakları savunucularından Pınar İlkkaracan, New York´ta ´´Peter-Patricia Gruber 2007 Uluslararası Kadın Hakları Ödülü´´ne layık görüldü. Türkiye´nin önde gelen kadın hakları savunucularından Pınar İlkkaracan, New York´ta ´´Peter-Patricia Gruber 2007 Uluslararası Kadın Hakları Ödülü´´ne layık görüldü. … (full text, 17 Ekim 2007).


Fearful Symbols: The Islamic Headscarf and the European Court of Human Rights, by T. Jeremy Gunn, draft 4 July 2005, 29 pdf-pages;

Turkish women slow to benefit from Ankara’s reforms (Reuters), by Emma Ross-Thomas, November 7, 2006;

Universal Declaration of Human Rights and its article 2;

Turkish Law Recognizes Women, Men as Equals, Jan 13, 2002;

When a male AKP MP opposed the “Gender Equality” name of the planned committee in parliament, it was changed to “Equality of Opportunities”. Women have reacted in protest, 11-02-2009;

Kadınlar ‘eşitlik’ zirvesinde buluştu, Sabah, Turkey, 16 Feb 2009;

AKP Meclis’te “Kadın-Erkek Eşitliği” Komisyonunu Engelliyor, Biamag, Turkey, 11 Feb 2009;

Eşitlik Komisyonu, Kadınların 10 Yıllık Mücadelesiyle Meclise Geldi, Kadın Haberleri, Turkey, 9 Feb 2009.

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