Solidarity campaign on the Istanbul Pride
The first "Pride March" in the Turkish city of Istanbul took place in 2003. Supported by the Gezi Park demonstrators and an amazingly sympathetic coverage in the media, ten years later it lured nearly 100,000 people to the streets. The demonstration became an important symbol for the visibility and spirit of the LGBTTIQ community in Turkey. At the same time, the Istanbul Pride set a shining example of diversity, which had a far-reaching impact on the Near and Middle East.
For the many years the march had always been peaceful, but the political and social situation in Turkey has changed, and the Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual, transgender, intersexual and queer people feel that change. Since 2015, the Pride Marchers have been repeatedly and brutally beaten by police using tear gas, rubber bullets and arrests. The images of the brutal state power on one side and fleeing demonstrators on the other were broadcast around the world.
Civil courage against hatred and violence
Journalists who have supported the liberation movement in Turkey are in jail or in exile. For the rainbow community on the Bosporus, there are almost no fundamental democratic rights. Events are banned with the justification for "public safety and morality", as for example the LSBTTIQ film days which the German embassy in Ankara organized in November 2017.
Nevertheless, activists plan to bring their protest to the streets in 2018 once again. Stronger than their fear of repression is their rage over the violent attacks and repression pursued by the state. Over the past eight years in Turkey, more than 40 people have been murdered solely for their transsexuality. The slogan "Expedition WIR" of the Christopher Street Day (CSD) in Stuttgart, is also intended to bring in focus the view beyond our own borders and into other countries. We will bring to light the misery, the suffering, the fear and the courage of our brothers and sisters in Turkey for all the world to see.
For the "Expedition WIR" on the Bosporus, we are collecting funds to support the public relations of Pride Istanbul Committee and the activists of SPoD (Sosyal Political Armed Forces, Cinsiyet Kimliği ve Cinsel Yönelim Çalışmaları Derneği). As part of the Pride Movement in Turkey, SPoD is committed to promoting Gender Equality and Human Rights and since December 2015 has been holding weekly Arabic meetings for Syrian LGBTTIQ refugees in Istanbul: www.spod.org.tr.
Join our solidarity campaign and donate online at www.betterplace.org/p62106 or with the keyword "Pride Istanbul" to the bank account of Weissenburg eV (IBAN: DE71 6005 0101 0002 4552 06).
Therefore we stand together in solidarity with the Istanbul Pride: IG CSD Stuttgart eV, LSBTTIQ center Weissenburg eV, Abseitz Stuttgart eV, LSVD Baden-Württemberg eV, AG diversity of the initiative learning and memorial Hotel Silber eV and Kings Club Owner and Federal Cross of Merit Laura Halding-Hoppenheit.