"In February 2015 the girl’s body, disfigured beyond recognition, was found in river Tarsus in southern Turkey. A few days earlier 19-year-old Özgecan Aslan was returning home from the university by bus. On some stretch of road she become the only passenger. Then the 26-year-old driver Ahmet Suphi Altındöken turned onto a country road, stopped in a remote place and started to rape Özgecan.
Afterward he told, how Özgecan tried to scream and fight back with all her might. Her attempts pissed off Ahmet. He punch in her face a couple of times, then hit in stomach and head with iron pipe, then stabbed her with knife eleven times. After that Ahmet asked his father and friend for a help to get rid of a body. Together they tried to burn her, and threw the remains into a dried river. Later during the trial Ahmet’s wife asked the judge the "most severe punishment" for her husband. It turned out that he beat his wife, sister and mother regularly.
Özgecan’s story set the whole country on fire. There were thousands of rallies and actions of solidarity. Women shared their experiences of sexual violence in social networks under the #sendeanlathashtag ("you must also tell"), men put on skirts and published photos under the #ozgecanicinminietekgiy hashtag ("wear a mini skirt for Özgecan"). Football players of Galatasaray took to the field with a banner: "Do not be silent in memory of Özgecan. Say ‘no’ to violence against women".
Such cases are not so unusual for Turkey. At that time the murder of Özgecan become the last drop of an overflowing cup of collective anger. But almost everyday media write about cruel violence against women: a man killed his sister, because she refuse to give him the password to her smartphone; a father beat his daughter half to death, because she didn’t prepare a dinner; a stranger in the minibus broke a girl's nose for wearing shorts; a wife committed suicide fearing her husband’s reprisal, because she had an accident while driving his car.
On the one hand society somehow get used to this endless stream of anger, horror and pain. There are normal things for a girl to change a work, an apartment, her social circle to get rid of the harassment of her chief, who stalks her. On the other hand, from time to time one of these stories responds with a powerful wave of mass protests".
This is an excerpt from the article ‘These streets have taught us to fear’ of the Ukrainian journalist Alona Savchuk. These photos were taken for her project about women in Turkey, their hard struggle not only for the rights, but also for their lives.