May 28, 2012 ( – Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is making headlines in Europe for calling abortion “murder,” and linking it to an international population control agenda.

“No one should have the right to authorize it. Whether you kill the baby within the womb of his mother, or kill him after his birth, there’s no difference,” said Erdogan on Friday.

The prime minister also said that the purpose of abortion is “to prevent this country’s population from growing further.”


“I see abortion as murder, and I call upon those circles and members of the media who oppose my comments: You live and breathe Uludere. I say every abortion is an Uludere,” Erdogan stated, referring to an air raid in 2011 that had led to the accidental deaths of 34 Turkish civilians.


The prime minister also denounced the country’s epidemic level of Caesarean births, which he says have reached fifty percent, and said he knows that “all of this is being done on purpose” as part of a population control campaign.

Erdogan’s statements were supported by Family and Social Policies Minister Fatma Şahin

“It is out of question for us to tamper with this right [to life] as the [governing] political will,” said Şahin, according to the Hurriyet Daily News, a Turkish newspaper. She also reportedly agreed with Erdogan’s concern with the high rate of births by Caesarean section, stating that “Caesarean [birth] is a surgical operation even if it [seems] painless. It bears risks in terms of the mother’s health.”

Canan Gullu, leader of the Federation of Women’s Associations, claimed that the prime minister was “attacking women” by opposing abortion.

“In such a party congress, the prime minister should have talked about women’s problems including unemployment, domestic violence, or their inadequate standing in political life, instead of making politics over women’s bodies,” said Gullu, according to the French Press Agency.

Abortion on demand up to the tenth week of pregnancy has been legal in Turkey since 1983.