Forced into marriage at the age of 15, Berivan Elif Kilic seems to be an unlikely candidate for politics. But the former child bride is now the newly elected mayor of Kocakoy, a farming town of 17,000 in southeastern Turkey.
Until five years ago, she suffered daily beatings by the man she was forced to marry and is now determined to fight for women’s rights. “People believe me when I talk about domestic violence,” she said. “I was beaten up myself; I don’t have my knowledge from books.”