Human Rights

Ban on İzmir Pride: Get used to us, we are not leaving!

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

İzmir LGBTI+ Pride Week Committee: Get used to us, we are not leaving. We existed, we exist and we will exist!

İzmir LGBTI+ Pride Week Committee made a press statement regarding the ban on Pride Week:

Izmir Governorship banned the whole events that was planned to take place between 17th and 23rd of June 2019, justified by the Law No. 2911 on Meetings and Demonstrations and Its Implementation, and also Articles 11 / A-C of the Provincial Administration Law No. 5442.

With the statement of Izmir Governorship, once again we see that LGBTI+ people in this country are not considered citizens, and they are left out in matters like peace, safety, personal inviolability, public safety and soundness; everything that the Governorship mentions as a justification for the ban against our events.

In recent political atmosphere of Turkey, especially during the last four years, the prohibition of Pride Week Events in several cities and also the indefinite ban of LGBTI+ related events in Ankara aims to intimidate and discourage against the steadily rising voice of LGBTI+ people about their demands and visibility. However, those who are putting these bans into work should know that we, LGBTI+ people existed since the beginning of history and will exist in the end too. You cannot ban our existence!

On the other hand, this attitude of the government does not seem as a coincidence when we look at the situation in Turkey, which is continuously getting more and more corrupt. If it is considered against "public morality" that us debating about “Gender and LGBTI+ Studies in Academy”, questioning sexuality and gender roles, and most fundamentally, us getting together, while at the same time murders of women are increasing each year, sexual abuses of children at Ensar Foundation is being passed off as a “one time thing”, and a hashtag that emphasizes and contributes to rape culture against Iceland is staying as a trending topic on Twitter for days, there can be only one explanation: the government is looking for a “pervert” to name. We are not going to be that pervert. We are going to continue our struggle by saying “Our Every Walk Is A Pride March” wherever we exist.

You are going to keep running across us in Kıbrıs Şehitleri Street where Izmir Pride March is being held every year, in a hostelry in Kemeraltı Bazaar, in a café in Bornova, in a hotel in Basmane, in a factory in Torbalı, in a resort in Çeşme, in a flower shop in Karşıyaka; always and everywhere in short. Even though you try to shame LGBTI+ people about their identities with discrimination and ill-treatment, this shame belongs to the government alone who is banning our events and marches - which we organize in order to shout our freedom and demand our rights. Streets are ours as our labor, identity and body!

Get used to us, we are not leaving. We existed, we exist and we will exist!

Related content:

The governorship of İzmir has banned the 7th İzmir Pride Week

 

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