11/01/2022 | Writer: Yıldız Tar
Six files were suited against 39 people, including two children.
Photography: Alen Geziyan, June 26, 2021, İstanbul LGBTİ+ Pride March
Six files were suited separately related to 2021 İstanbul LGBTI+ Pride Parade, which was overshadowed by bans and police attack, up to now. Beside the lawsuits filed against detainees at İstanbul Pride March, one person who participated to the picnic in Maçka, was also sued following a police attack.
LGBTI+ right defenders are on trial opposing Law on Meetings and Demonstrations No 2911 within the context of lawsuits, filed against totally 40 people, 2 of children.
Police attack in Mis Street was not enough either, files were also suited
Photography: Hacı Bişkin / Gazete Duvar, June 26, 2021, Mis Street
Files were suited against 19 people, who were detained in Mis Street by means of police torture, even before the march was started, claiming to oppose Law on Meetings and Demonstrations No 2911 and also resisting police officers in order to prevent them fulfilling their duty. While police attacks and rear-handcuffing which can been observed at photographs and recordings do not take place in the indictment filed by Terrorism and Organized Crime Investigation Bureau under the Istanbul Chief Prosecutor’s Office; LGBTI+ right defenders are demanded to be punished.
The first trial of the case is going to be heard on May 13, 2022 at 10.00, at İstanbul 60th Penal Court of First Instance.
I. Cihangir case: Police torture is not in the indictment once again!
Seven persons are judged in another case which was filed against LGBTI+ right defenders who were exposed to police torture at Pride March. Police violence against LGBTI+ right defenders, who are judged opposing to Law on Meetings and Demonstrations No 2911, does not either take place in the indictment filed by Terrorism and Organized Crime Investigation Bureau under the Istanbul Chief Prosecutor’s Office.
The first trail of the case is going to be heard on March 9, 2022 at İstanbul 18th Penal Court of First Instance.
II. Cihangir case
Three files were suited against 3 persons who were detained following a police attack in Cihangir. Police violence against LGBTI+ right defenders, who are judged opposing to Law on Meetings and Demonstrations No 2911, does not either take place in the indictment.
The first trial of the case is going to be heard on January 25, 2022, at 09.35 am at 14th Penal Court of First Instance.
Lawsuits against even children!
A file was suited against two children who were detained by the police using physical violence, in Cihangir during Pride March. The case of the children, within the context of same indictment, is going to be heard at Juvenile Court.
The first trial of the case is going to be heard on February 22, 2022, at İstanbul 4th Juvenile Court.
The picnic in Maçka was not disregarded!
A file was suited against one more person who attended to picnic, which was planned to be organized in Heybeli and transferred to Maçka Parc following a ban, and was prevented by a police attack, within the context of LGBTI+ Pride Parade on June 22, 2021. One person is on trial for defamation, because the complaint of the police attacking LGBTI+s.
The first trial of the case is going to be heard on January 27, 2022, at 10.20 am at İstanbul 44th Penal Court of First Instance.
LGBTIQ+ Assemblies case: Discrimination in the indictment!
The case, in which 8 activists from LGBTIQ+ Assemblies are judged due to attending İstanbul LGBTI+ Pride March in 2021, began on November 2. The slogans: “You will never walk alone” and “Don’t stay silent, shout homosexuals exist” take part in the indictment in addition to banner of LGBTIQ+ Assembly. The prosecutor used the Beyoğlu Governor’s Office unlawful ban on demonstrations as an excuse.
The next trial of the case is going to beard on February 8.
“They want to minimize the public support by filing 6 separate suits”
Lawyer Umut Rojda Yıldırım, Coordinator of Access to Law and Justice at Association of Social Policies, Gender Identity and Orientation Studies (SPoD) and volunteer of 2021 LGBTI+ Pride Parade, evaluated the cases for KaosGL.org:
“Unfortunately the lawsuits, against people who want to exercise their fundamental rights and freedom at Pride March, has become a standard fare.” underlining the 6 separate lawsuits was a conscious choice, unlike previous years:
“Suiting separate files for the people taken into custody within the context of the same activity, is a conscious choice. They aim to complicate to monitor the cases and minimize the public support by dividing the files instead of combining them. There is no legal explanation for this attitude else than isolate them.”
What does it have to do with prosecutors of terror?
Lawyer Yıldırım says that conducting the investigations through the prosecutors of terror and organized crimes is also conscious.
“Conducting an investigation of a case opposing to Law on Meetings and Demonstrations No 2911, through prosecutors of terror is incredible and unbelievable. They restricted our, that is to say lawyers, access to the files by doing so.”
“Fundamental rights and freedoms of LGBTI+s are violated”
Reminding the police attack all across in Beyoğlu, Yıldırım finally said: “These cases are, themselves, violation of fundamental rights and freedom while LGBTI+s were taken into custody far and near by the police using physical violence and in an unlawful way. We are tired of repeating that holding meetings and demonstrations is a constitutional right. However, the detention of people from a march where they were not even allowed to disperse and the cases following it, have not come to a close.”
What happened at 2021 Pride March?
A call to meeting was made for 19th LGBTİ+ Pride March on June 26, at 17.00 pm. Following the threatening of Adalar Security, 30-day activity ban of Şişli Governor’s Office, picnic ban and police attack in Maçka, the pride march was also banned. Beyoğlu Governor’s Office banned the Pride March under cover of: “national security, public order, prevention of commission of crime, protection of public health, and public morals or the rights and freedoms of others.”
LGBTİ+ Pride March overcame the ban of Beyoğlu Governor’s Office and the police violence and Beyoğlu streets echoed with the slogans: “We don’t keep quiet, we are not afraid, we don’t obey.”
Police attacked to Mis Street even before the march began. Press statement was issued in Odakule. Then the press statement was reread in Tünel. LGBTI+s walked to Cihangir from Tünel. Police attacked again. LGBTI+s swarmed in Cezayir Street once again. Police attack went on here as well. LGBTİ+s shouted “We are here, get used to it, we are not going anywhere!” just to spite ongoing police attacks day long.
Translation: Selma Koçak
Tags: human rights, life