Women carry coffin at murdered Turkish woman’s funeral

At the funeral, Ozgecan’s mother Songul called for her daughter’s murderers to face a harsh punishment

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Thousands bid farewell on Saturday at the funeral of Ozgecan Aslan, a 20-year-old woman who was murdered during a rape attempt in a southern Turkish town, while women carried her coffin in a defiance of the local imam.

While the imam in the town of Mersin had asked for women to step back during the funeral, hundreds of women attended her funeral standing at the front, and carried her coffin through packed streets, Turkish newspaper the Hurriyet Daily News reported.

At the funeral, Ozgecan’s mother Songul called for her daughter’s killer to face a harsh punishment.

“They should be executed, they should be tortured,” she said, according to the daily.

News of Aslan’s death earlier this week shocked many, including women’s rights activists, who took to the streets in Istanbul’s central Taksim square to protest against her murder.

Burned body

Police on Friday discovered the burned body of 20-year-old Ozgecan Aslan in a riverbed in southern Turkey.

She had been missing since Wednesday when she was reported to have boarded a minibus to go home, the Hurriyet newspaper reported.

Three suspects including the driver of the minibus were detained and are said to have admitted to having stabbed Aslan.

A motive for the alleged murder was not immediately clear but the private Dogan news agency reported that the driver attempted to rape Aslan after she was left alone in the minibus.

She resisted by spraying pepper gas at the driver who stabbed her to death, according to Dogan. The driver later sought help from two other people -- his father and friend -- to hide the body.