With signs such as “protect your family and your generation”, “say no to a society without gender” and “father + mother + baby = family”, protesters marched through Istanbul on Sunday, EuroNews reports. One of the speakers at the demonstration demanded a ban on LGBT+ propaganda, as in Russia. Other speakers accused LGBT+ people of abusing minors.
To promote the demonstration, “The Great Family Gathering”, a television advertisement was made and allowed by the Turkish media commission.
Human rights activists cite the hypocrisy of the Turkish authorities to ban Pride events across the country but give way to a demonstration that would fuel discrimination. ILGA Europe tweeted: “The Turkish state must fulfil its constitutional obligation to protect all its citizens from hatred and violence.”
Lawyer and jurist Kerem Altıparmak emphasizes that the demonstration will most likely provoke violence. “Turkey is a country where a lot of homosexual and transphobic violence takes place.” He reasons, pointing to the European Convention on Human Rights, that the demonstration should have been banned because of the hateful approach.
Although Turkey was one of the few Muslim countries where Pride events could take place undisturbed, a more repressive wind has been blowing through the country in recent years. President Erdogan and his AK party are increasingly positioning themselves as defenders of family values, constantly banning Pride events. 373 people were arrested in the latest attempt to celebrate Pride in Istanbul.