Turkey’s capital clamped down further on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) life on Sunday in a move likely to deepen concern among rights advocates.
All LGBTI events, including cinema, theater, discussion panels and interviews, were forbidden until further notice, Ankara’s gubernatorial office said, to avert “public hatred and hostility” likely to emerge “within certain segments” of society.
Once hugely popular gay pride parades have already been banned for several years in the Turkish capital and the country’s largest city of Istanbul.
Homosexuality has been legal in Turkey since its modern republic was created in 1923, but LGBTI individuals often complain of harassment amid conservatism propagated by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Islamist-rooted AK party.
Last Wednesday, Ankara banned a German gay film festival planned for the Turkish capital just a day before it was due to start, citing public safety
Four movies by German directors had been scheduled for screening.
A group involved with the intended festival, Pink Life QueerFest, said officials suggestions that the films would even provoke terror attacks only legitimized “those people and institutions that produce hate speech towards us.”