07/01/2021 | Writer: Yıldız Tar

LGBTI+ activist Havin, who was detained from their home after protesting the appointment of academic president at Boğaziçi University, was strip-searched, both Havin and Yıldız İdil Şen were threatened with sexual violence.

Threats of strip search and sexual violence against detained LGBTI+ activists! Kaos GL - News Portal for LGBTI+

WARNING: This report is related to violence. Although details are not included, the incident is narrated. Content can trigger the memories of those who have previously exposed or witnessed violence, discrimination, hatred, and have traumatic effects. In such a case, you can contact the mental health professional you think can support you, contact the LGBTI+ formation in your city, or email danisma@kaosgl.org for support.

Students from different universities were detained in the morning of January 5th, after protesting against the appointment of 2015's parliamentary candidate of AKP, Prof Dr. Melih Bulu's to the post of academic presidentship of Boğaziçi University.

Police operations continued during the January 5th. The Governorate of İstanbul also banned all demonstrations in Beşiktaş and Sarıyer, where the Boğaziçi University campus is located.

LGBTI+ activists Yıldız İdil Şen and Havin were among those detained on January 5th. Women's Liberation (Kadınların Kurtuluşu) member Yıldız İdil Şen and Red Ocean LGBTI+ (Kızıl Okyanus LGBTI+) member Havin were subjected to intense hate speech on social media following their protest in Boğaziçi University.

Insults, physical violence and threats of sexual violence!

Yıldız and Havin were subjected to discriminatory insults, physical violence and threats of sexual violence during their detention. Att. Yağmur Kavak from the Progressive Lawyers Association (ÇHD) Committee Against Torture, explained the experiences of their clients to KaosGL.org as follows:

"Before being detained, our clients have used their fundamental, constitutional rights on the day of protests in Boğaziçi University. However, in the evening of the same day, members of parliament and actors with very high followers started the lynch campaign by posting our clients' photos. Thousands of tweets were sent against them. We were going to take legal action on them, but we didn't have much time. Because they were detained in the morning.

"They took Havin and Yıldız İdil around 5 am. They know whom to take. They face a lot of insults and threats of rape based on being LGBTI+ activists and political persons. There was also physical violence such as slaps on the face and kicks. They aim to leave psychological damage, especially through the threats of psychological violence and rape.

"They were once again targeted publicly in the hospital"

“All these insults and threats continue in the hospital too. A police officer insults our clients in a way that everyone hears. They have used kinds of expressions that I cannot verbalize; discriminatory, sexist and anti-LGBTI+ expressions.

“At the police station, our clients are kept with men, contrary to their gender identity. At the police station, they impose a strip-search on Havin. They additionally harassed her by searching by hand during the strip-search. Threats of rape with police batons continue here as well. Our clients started a hunger strike against all these. Even sugar wasn't provided for them yesterday, but today it's settled. 

"As ÇHD Istanbul Combating Torture Commission, we will apply to judicial authorities in the coming days against discriminatory attitude, insults, threats of rape with a baton, reverse handcuffs, strip-search, harassment and lynching on social media just because they are LGBTI+ activists and political persons."

Translation: Yiğit E. Korkmaz

Tags: human rights