Hundreds arrested in Istanbul: Police crack down on Pride march

Hundreds were arrested in Istanbul
Police crack down on Pride march

Despite the ban, large numbers of people in Istanbul take to the streets to protest. Before the event begins, police accidentally arrest people at a nearby bar and prevent journalists from doing their job.

Turkish police have arrested more than 200 participants in an officially banned protest march in Istanbul on Sunday, according to organizers. In addition to the activists, the detainees included AFP photographer Bülent Kilic and other journalists, a news agency team said. Istanbul Governor Pride bans the march.

Hundreds of protesters with rainbow flags gathered in the streets around Taksim Square, which was closed to the public. They defied the police and marched for about an hour through the streets around Sihangir. They said “The future is strange!” And “You are not alone!”.

Before the march began, police indiscriminately arrested people, including journalists, at several liquor stores in Sihangir. According to several eyewitnesses, members of the press tried to prevent the detainees from being filmed. AFP photographer Glick was arrested in a similar situation last year. Turkish officials criticized the Reporters Without Borders (RSF) organization on Twitter, saying it was “customary to arrest AFP photojournalist Bülent Kilic”. RSF spokesman Errol Ondoronglu accused the authorities of “violent and arbitrary arrests” of journalists.

The Pride Parade 2014 had 100,000 participants

“Anyone arrested for participating in the Pride march should be released immediately and unconditionally,” said Milena Pium of Amnesty International. From the evening, the first detainees were released. According to his lawyer, Glick was also released.

After a sensational Pride march with more than 100,000 participants in Istanbul in 2014, Turkish authorities officially banned the event again in recent years for security reasons. European Council for Human Rights Commissioner Tunja Mijadovic on Friday called on Turkish authorities to allow the march. “The human rights of the LGBTI people in Turkey must be effectively protected,” he said.


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