MARMARA, Turkey, Aug. 14 (UPI) -- Turkish residents of a sea resort town in Marmara say they don't see the need for a women-only section at a local public beach.
Authorities of the Kocaeli Metropolitan Municipality decided to establish a segregated area for women and installed wooden screens to divide it from the rest of the shore, the Hurriyet Daily News said Tuesday. The move was made to cater to the more religious Muslim women who remain fully clothed when visiting a beach and after the local authorities initiated a massive clean-up along the shore, declaring it safe for swimming, the paper said.
People living near the screened off area attempted to block authorities from erecting the barriers, the paper said.
"Women who want to cover themselves can also swim in the public beach. We don't want a structure like this that blocks the shore," an unidentified resident told the paper.
However, a statement from the municipality said a decision to section off part of the beach was prompted by a request from local women.
"Women who don't want to go to beaches where both men and women are present made a special request at this point in the process and asked for a beach. We are happy to have such a request and to fulfill it," a statement by the municipality said.
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