ISTANBUL: A Turkish court on Thursday sentenced a man to almost four years in prison for attacking a young nurse on a bus for wearing shorts in a case that sparked public outrage.
The assault in Istanbul was caught on camera and reportedly shows the man shouting “those who wear shorts must die”.
Security guard Abdullah Cakiroglu, who was not in court, was ordered to serve a three year and 10 month jail sentence for “preventing the practice of freedom of faith, thought and opinion” and deliberately causing injury, the Anadolu news agency reported.
Aysegul Terzi, 24, had previously told the court how her attacker shouted she had “no right to live” before kicking her in the face in the incident in September last year.
“I am often crying, I often find myself angry, I am often feeling like someone is about to attack me,” she told Turkish television after the incident which sparked public outrage.
At the time, Cakiroglu admitted to local media the assault “was not right” and said he was suffering from a mental illness, having previously been diagnosed with bipolar disorder.
The incident galvanised public opinion in Turkey, which is officially a secular country, prompting street protests with the slogan: “Do not touch my shorts!”
The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has championed the removal of restrictions on women wearing the Muslim headscarf.
Critics have accused the AKP of presiding over Islamisation of Turkey and violating private rights, something the party denies.