Large-scale protest against LGBT propaganda held in Istanbul

19 September 14:00
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Large-scale protest against LGBT propaganda held in Istanbul

Thousands of people came to a rally in Turkey demanding a ban on LGBT propaganda and the activities of sex minority organisations.

On September 18, 2022, the largest anti-LGBT propaganda rally was held in Istanbul, where protesters demanded that the authorities pass a law banning LGBT organizations and the promotion of non-traditional relationships, reports middleeasteye.net.

In the biggest anti-LGBTQ protest in recent years, called the Big Family Gathering, thousands of people marched through Istanbul. Kursat Mikan, one of the organisers of the rally, said 150,000 Turkish citizens had signed a petition urging lawmakers to pass a new law completely banning LGBTQ propaganda and sex minority activities. This includes propaganda spread through Netflix series, social media, sports and cultural events.

"The authorities must save families, children from this filth," said one of the participants in the march in Istanbul, noting that despite the bad weather, many people came to the protest march "for the future, for their children".

Protesters carried banners: "Family protection is a matter of national security".

In announcing the demonstration, organisers distributed a video showing footage of LGBTQ Pride marches in Turkey that had taken place previously. This has angered representatives of LGBTQ organisations and some human rights groups. Organisers of Istanbul Pride called on the governor to ban the event and on the authorities to cancel the screening of the video, which they argue incites hatred. Representatives of ILGA Europe, an international lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex association dedicated to the human rights of LGBT people, tweeted that they were concerned about an increased risk of violence against minorities. Amnesty International's office in Turkey said the principles of equality and non-discrimination were being violated.

The Turkish authorities are pursuing a hardline course towards LGBT people, aussiedlerbote.de noted. Turkish politicians openly refer to LGBTQ activists as "perverts" and to the LGBTQ community as a threat to traditional family values. Although gay pride parades were held in Istanbul in 2003 and 2014, since 2015 LGBT parades and other events have been banned in the country, with illegal minority marches being dispersed by the police. In particular, in July 2022, the police dispersed an LGBT parade, detaining approximately 30 people.

As reported, the Serbian government has cancelled the Gay Pride parade in Belgrade.

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