Turkish gay groups demand protection

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A Turkish lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) group is demanding the country protects its rights after a recent demonstration was marred by anti-gay groups.

LGBT people coming from different cities to demonstrate in Bursa were unable to move from the local centre of the Rainbow Association after being attacked by an angry crowd of 200-250 people throwing stones.

They were not allowed to leave the building for a couple of hours. Security officers claimed that they were not going to allow them to demonstrate since they could not protect them.

Also, in case of insistence the police claimed that they would take the demonstrators into custody.

While the aggressor group was having slogans like “A handful of queers, pray to police!”, “There is no way out here, you will die”. Via the press declaration held inside the representatives of the LGBT organisations criticised the head of the Association of the Tradesmen supporting the team of Bursaspor, Fevzinur Dundar, who incited the crowd to use violence and the chief police officer of Bursa who they felt did not actively take necessary measures to protect the march.

After the declaration the demonstrators coming from Ankara and Istanbul were transferred to the bus terminal with police escorts and left the city.

The members of the Rainbow Association in Bursa waited until the evening and than left the building again with police escorts.

Mr Dundar, had declared earlier that “Bursa is the city of Ottoman Sultans and religious men. This city does not deserve to be humiliated by these people outside/against society and by their meetings. We will surely hinder them from walking. Nothing is done for this meeting in legal terms, however, we will socially stop them, we will prevent them from walking. Bursa is not a kind of city where damned people with vague identities wander around.

“I speak to security units, to the governors and politicians, if they do not want them to be lynched, they make their attitudes and behaviours clear.”

The demonstration in Bursa, aiming to protest the application of the governor’s offices of Bursa and Istanbul to the prosecutor’s office for the ban of Lambdaistanbul and Bursa Rainbow Associations, and the recent ban on the magazine of Kaos GL, was to be the first LGBT demonstration in Turkey outside the two major cities Ankara and Istanbul.

The Rainbow Association said in a statement: “To all the groups, institutions and to the aggressors which were trying to lynch us claiming that we are immoral, we want the declare that the real immorality is to insist not to see the reality of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transvestite and transsexuals, to force them to live in a two-faced life and creating the lynch atmosphere. The LGBT’s do exist and will exist for good.

“We also declare that we will start legal action against the head of the Association of Tradesmen Supporting Bursaspor who carries the flag for these inhuman attitudes towards LGBT’s.

“We are not sick, nor immoral. We are humans. What has to be changed is not us, but the perspective of the society which is wrong and unjust.”