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Turkish judge suspended after inappropriate “short skirt” comment

Mehmet Yoylu, a Turkish judge, has been suspended by Turkey’s Council of Judges and Prosecutors (HSK) after he reprimanded a female lawyer, Tugce Cetin, for wearing “inappropriate workplace attire”, Hurriyet daily reported on Wednesday.

During a court hearing in Istanbul earlier this week, Yoylu wanted a photograph taken of Cetin’s skirt to send to the Istanbul Bar Association as he believed the skirt was too short and, therefore, violated the court’s dress code.

The HSK launched an investigation into the incident after a group of attorneys filed a complaint with the council.

“Yoylu has been suspended pending investigation,” the HSK said on Wednesday.

Commenting on the dismissal of Yoylu, Turkey’s Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gul stated on Wednesday that it was “unacceptable” for someone in Yoylu’s position to be more interested in the attire of a lawyer than the actual legal hearing.

“Our judicial system cannot allow for anyone to be discriminated against based on attire or lifestyle or be exposed to arbitrary treatment when delivering justice or searching for justice,” Gul said in a tweet.

The Union of Turkish Bar Associations (TBB) gave a statement saying that they will not accept such behavior and that they will pursue the unlawful harassment of a judge targeting a female lawyer.

Cetin posted a photo of her with her fiancée, also a lawyer, in front of an Istanbul court on Thursday, wearing the same skirt that Yoylu claimed to have violated the dress code.

“We are where we always are, wearing the same clothes,” she tweeted.

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