Turkey: Banned Pride march must be allowed to take place in peace
Ahead of tomorrow’s planned student Pride march at the Middle East Technical University - cancelled by the university’s rector under the blanket ban of LGBTI events by Ankara’s city authorities – Fotis Filippou, Amnesty International’s Campaigns Director for Europe said:
“For the last seven years students at this university have marched through their campus in support of LGBTI rights. Rather than banning Pride events, university and city authorities should be supporting and protecting such marches. Students must be allowed to march without fear of intimidation or violence.”
Rather than banning Pride events, university and city authorities should be supporting and protecting such marches
“It is not just this university’s march that is under threat. Such bans have been used to reverse a once progressive trend to counter homophobia and transphobia in Turkey.”
UPDATE - 11 May 2018
Following an intervention by the university rector allowed the Pride march to take place, Fotis Filippou, Amnesty International’s Campaigns Director for Europe said:
“Today love triumphed in Turkey as hundreds of university students defied a blanket ban on LGBTI events in Ankara and went ahead with their annual Pride march. Their action sent a message of hope to all those struggling to withstand the climate of fear and uphold fundamental rights in Turkey and beyond.
Today love triumphed in Turkey as hundreds of university students defied a blanket ban on LGBTI events and went ahead with their annual Pride march
"But whilst their courage and determination is an inspiration to all activists fighting for freedom and equality in the face of repression, the fact these students had to fight for their right to hold a peaceful march in the first place is disgraceful. Ankara’s authorities must now lift the unlawful and ridiculous blanket ban on all LGBTI events.”
Ahead of the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOT) on 17 May, Amnesty International are calling on Ankara Governor to reverse the blanket ban on all LGBTI events in Ankara.
Turkish authorities must to ensure that lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) individuals and their allies are able to enjoy their rights to freedom of expression and assembly without fear of intimidation or violence.