Trans Pride March held in Turkey's İstanbul despite the ban
Not recognizing the ban of the İstanbul’s Governor’s Office on their march, the LGBT community members held the 8th Trans Pride March despite the blockade. The marchers who chanted slogans and said ‘we are not going to change our path’ started to walk in İstanbul’s Şişli district with rainbow flag in their hands. Their march was blocked by police just a few blocks up. 7 people were taken into custody after the police chased marchers in back streets.
Since Taksim Square and its surrounding had been under strict police surveillance and blockade, the LGBT members gathered in Şişli – a town next to Taksim – and gave their press statements there before starting their march.
Talking on behalf of the group, trans activist Eylem Çağdaş underlined that the march has been banned by the governor’s office for the past two years although it had been held for years without any problems.
Çağdaş said: “We are asking: is safety and security ensured through shooting tear gas, beating, and taking into custody the people who are practicing their constitutional right to assemble? Is what you call ‘security’ ensured through keeping silent against attacks of fascist civilans on the march – which is obviously a crime according to the constitution? We ask these questions but we also know that the governor’s office will not answer them! ...As people who are fighting for constitutional rights to be protected, we call on you (the Governor) to act in line with the constition and stop committing crimes. We are goint to continue defend our lives. We are trans people and we are here! Get used to it; we are not going anywhere.”
Highlighting that nearly 100 trans individuals in Turkey were wounded as a result of attacks by homophobics and transphobics,
Çağdaş also drew attention to the harsh life conditions faced by the Syrian trans people in the country.