Rahşan Ecevit (née Aral, 17 December 1923 – 17 January 2020) was a Turkish author, painter and politician. She was the second lady of Turkey four times during her husband Bülent Ecevit's prime ministries.
Ecevit in 2015
|Leader of the Democratic Left Party|
14 November 1985 – 13 September 1987
|Preceded by||Position established|
|Succeeded by||Bülent Ecevit|
|Leader of the Democratic Left People's Party|
17 January 2010 – 12 June 2010
|Preceded by||Hulki Cevizoğlu|
|Succeeded by||Party closed|
Zekiye Rahşan Aral
17 December 1923
|Died||17 January 2020 (aged 96)|
|Resting place||Turkish State Cemetery, Ankara|
|Political party||Democratic Left Party (1985–2009) |
Democratic Left People's Party (2009–2010)
(m. 1946; died 2006)
|Relatives||Nazlı Ecevit (mother-in-law)|
|Alma mater||Robert College|
|Profession||Politician, writer, painter|
She was born in Bursa, Turkey to a family from Şebinkarahisar, a town in the north-eastern Giresun province. Her father was Namık Zeki Aral and her mother Zahide Aral. Their family came from Thessaloniki after the population exchange agreement in 1920. Rahşan graduated from the American high school Robert College in İstanbul. She married her classmate Bülent Ecevit in 1946.
Following the military coup in 1980 led by General Kenan Evren, her husband was imprisoned and was suspended from active politics for life. Bülent Ecevit's party, the Republican People's Party (CHP), was closed down. On 14 November 1985, Rahşan founded a centre left social democratic party, the Democratic Left Party (DSP), and led it until her husband's ban from politics was lifted in 1987.
Rahşan Ecevit was the vice president of the Democratic Left Party and responsible for the party's organization between 1989 and 2004. She became the leader of the new Democratic Left People's Party (DSHP) on 17 January 2010 when the DSP seemed to no longer have any chance to win seats in elections. After Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu had become the leader of the CHP and halted the rightist trend within the party, she disbanded her new party and with many members joined the now rather social democratic CHP.
On 5 November 2006, her husband died following an almost 6-month long medically induced coma.
- Benjakob, Omer (31 January 2020). "Wikipedia Beats Erdogan's Censorship – and Turks Are Flocking Back". Haaretz. Retrieved 25 March 2020.
- "DSHP'de Cevizoğlu gitti, Ecevit geldi" (in Turkish). cnnturk. 17 January 2010. Retrieved 17 January 2010.
- "Rahşan Ecevit Kurultayda". Archived from the original on 17 January 2020.
- "Rahşan Ecevit Hayatını Kaybetti". 17 January 2020. Archived from the original on 17 January 2020.
|Party political offices|
| Leader of the Democratic Left Party (DSP)
| Leader of the Democratic Left People's Party (DSHP)