Turkish opposition deputy questions gov’t over banning pride marches

Turkish opposition deputy Sezgin Tanrıkulu on Tuesday lodged a parliamentary inquiry asking why the deputy governor of İstanbul had banned a pride march of LGBTI+ groups, Turkish media reported.

In their initial meeting with İstanbul Deputy Governor Mehmet Ali Özyiğit, the groups were prevented from holding the pride march in İstanbul’s famous Taksim Square. They then had asked to march in other venues, but Özyiğit rejected that as well.

A statement from the İstanbul Governor’s Office last week described the LGBTI+ groups as “uncertain for the public,” referring to a potential danger that would be posed by the public to the demonstrations.

On Saturday a group wanted to hold a march in İzmir but encountered aggressive tactics by the police that led to the detention of 15 activists.

Tanrıkulu also asked how many LGBTI+ members had been killed in the last 17 years, the time in power of the ruling party, due to provocative hate speech.

A ranking by the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association (ILGA) has put Turkey in the second lowest place in Europe in terms of LGBTI rights in May 2019.

With a percentage score of 5.16, Turkey was ranked 48th out of 49 countries, followed only by Azerbaijan.The statistic is based on how the laws and policies of each country impact the lives of LGBTI people.

ILGA tracks each country using a range of indicators including equality, family issues, hate speech, legal gender recognition, freedom of expression and asylum rights (SCF with turkishminute.com)

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