Do you know the story behind the trending black and white #challengeaccepted?

The middle eastern women took to social media and started the #challengeaccepted with their black and white photos as a mark of protest. The photos represent how the murdered victims of gender violence end up appearing in black and white in newspapers. The trend was started in Turkey after the brutal killing of 27-year-old Pınar Gültekin.

Key Highlights

  • The Black and White Viral photo trend on social media is a mark of protest against gender violence, crime against women, and femicide.

  • It started in Turkey after the brutal killing of 27-year-old Pınar Gültekin

  • Black and White Photos represent the murdered victims of Gender violence in newspaper

Who was Pinar Gültekin?

Pinar was like you and me. She was a university student whose body was found in the Aegean district of Muğla on Tuesday, 21 July. After investigating, Police found, Pinar’s ex-boyfriend, Cemal Metin Avci, strangled her, burned her body, and dumped her in an oil drum in the forest. Why? He wanted to get back together. She did not. Cemal, 32, is a married man and has a family. According to media reports, when Pinar refused his advances, Cemal punched her, and then strangled her to death. In his confession, he revealed the horrifying details of how he tried to get rid of the body by placing it in an oil drum used to burn garbage. He then dragged the container into the forest and tried to further conceal the contents by pouring cement mix over the top. The entitlement of the murderer, the spine chilling details of Pinar's killing led to an uproar in Turkey. Pinar was the most recent of hundreds of femicide victims in the country each year. Women took to streets to highlight their anger over rising violence against women. It is said, on average, at least one woman a day is murdered in Turkey.

Some Facts

In 2013, 237 women were killed in Turkey. The number kept on increasing to 294 in 2014, 303 in 2015, 328 in 2016, 409 in 2017, 440 in 2018, and 474 in 2019. A rise of 200 percent since 2013. The data was provided by women’s activist body We Will Stop Femicides Platform (Kadın Cinayetlerini Durduracağız Platformu). KADES, a mobile application was developed by the Government of Turkey for domestic violence victims. In the last two years, the application has recorded over 30,601 cases.

“Each day, 38 women reported being subjected to violence through the app. These are merely the women who had access to a smartphone and this application,” opposition Republican People’s Party Vice-Chair Gamze Akkuş İlgezdi in a statement on July 20.

“The real data is much more overwhelming and portrays a much more devastating picture.”

Why #Challengeaccepted

The trend started in Turkey, but women around the world can relate to it. The magnanimity of the atrocities may vary, but Modus Operandi remains the same: Violence against women. The battle seems to have no end. Thereby making it imperative more than ever for women to stand by each other. Women believe in women. Women cheer other women. Women supporting women.


About the Author

Prakriti S is a foodie, wildlife photographer, geo-politics enthusiast, and a woman activist.

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