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Tension escalates in parliament over expelled CHP politician’s sexual abuse case

The ruling AKP has accused the main opposition CHP of having insufficiently responded to the sexual abuse case filed against the CHP’s former Maltepe district deputy chair Umut Karagöz. In return, CHP MP Sera Kadıgil recalled that CHP women deputies had held a press meeting with regards to the incident and Karagöz had been expelled from the party.

Tension arose in parliament on Dec. 11 between deputies from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) concerning sexual abuse case filed against CHP’s former Maltepe district deputy chair Umut Karagöz.

AKP MP Öznur Çalık sought to cast the main opposition as insufficient to respond to the sexual assault incident, a characterization that CHP MP Sera Kadıgil disputed.

Çalık said that the AKP has been undertaking a “zero-tolerance struggle against the issues of domestic violence, sexual harassment and rape,” and accused the CHP officials of “burying their heads in the sand” when it comes to these issues.

Kadıgül argued against Çalık’s accusations, recalling that CHP women deputies had held a press meeting about the sexual assault committed by Karagöz and the perpetrator had been expelled from the party.

“We said [in the relevant press meeting] that it is our basic principle to approach every kind of sexual abuse, rape and violence incident with ‘zero tolerance,’ independent of who the perpetrator is,” said Kadıgil.

The CHP MP also read out aloud a Tweet that she previously posted about the incident, in which she expressed her desire that Karagöz gets the severest penalty possible.

Karagöz was arrested last month over charges that she sexually assaulted a 20-year-old woman in a washroom. Following the incident, Karagöz was expelled from the CHP. 

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