European Commission President Von der Leyen on the 26th local time on the three weeks ago in Turkey encountered the “sofa door” comments, and called for the advancement of women’s rights. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had to sit on a sofa on April 6th when he met with visiting European Council President Michel von der Leyen in the capital Ankara. Sitting face-to-face with her was Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.
According to German state television (DW) reported on April 26, von der Leyen tweeted the same day, “sofa door” shows that “we are far from equal treatment of women, whenever and wherever.”
The BBC reported on April 26th that von der Leyen had addressed the European Parliament on the same day. She argued that, because of her gender, she had not been treated in a way that matched her identity when she visited Turkey, “and I could not find any justification to explain what had happened to me … I can only conclude that this happened because I was a woman. If I were wearing a suit and tie, would this happen again? As a woman and as a European, I feel hurt and lonely. ”
However, as the European Commission’s first female president, Ms von der Leyen also admitted that she also had the privilege of fighting gender injustice, which millions of other women did not even have.
In March 2021, turkey announced its withdrawal from the Istanbul Convention, which aims to protect women’s rights, and Von der Leyen attacked Turkey’s actions, arguing that thousands of things that were far more serious every day than “sofa doors” were invisible.
It is worth noting that Von der Leyen did not publicly accuse Erdogan or Michel of “sofa door”, but expressed the hope that he and Michel will be treated equally.
German state television reported that “sofa door” one of the parties to the European Council President Michel 26 also apologized for the matter. He said he should have given up his seat to Von der Leyen, but feared it would lead to more diplomatic conflict, given the strained relationship between the EU and Turkey. After the sofa door, some EU officials at one point stressed that Michel’s diplomacy was higher.