Human Rights

TIHEK insists on discrimination: “Same-sex partnership is not an alternative”

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Besides hate speeches during the symposium, Human Rights and Equality Institution of Turkey (TIHEK) has targeted LGBTI+s in the final declaration of the symposium.

Human Rights and Equality Institution of Turkey (TIHEK) continues its discriminations based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Organizing “Symposium on Protecting Family Right” and targeting LGBTI+s with hate speeches during the symposium, TIHEK also targeted LGBTI+s in final declaration of the symposium. 

In the ninth article of the final declaration, it has been written: “National and international norms that may be negative effects on family should be reconsidered; Approaches of international norms and controlling mechanisms towards eliminating the structure of the family should be avoided”.  

TIHEK: “Same-sex partnership is never an alternative of family”

In the final declaration, TIHEK also used discriminative discourses against LGBTI+s:

“The foundation of healthy society is the family founded by men and women with legitimate marriage. The concept of family life is tried to be replaced by “companionship”, “partnership”, etc., and these forms tried to be imposed in society have negative effect on family institution. Additionally, due to the fact that same-sex people do not have a chance to reproduce in “partnership”, such companionships are never the alternative of family”.

Istanbul Convention is also targeted by TIHEK

Underlining that national and international norms, bounding Turkey as a party, to have negative effects on the family institution, TIHEK calls Turkish authorities in the declaration to renegotiate these international conventions.

Istanbul Convention, The Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence, imposes obligations to prevent and protection against violence against women. The convention has also some obligations for anti-discrimination based on SOGI. Therefore, TIHEK calls related authorities to breach of the Istanbul Convention in the final declaration.

TİHEK member spews hatred

Last year, the Former Chair of the Prime Ministry Human Rights Office and Member of TİHEK Board Mehmet Altuntaş targeted Pride Walk through is social media account.

He had written “What pride, what love? Love happens between two different sexes. Both the divine creation and nature says this. This is a regression. It’s regressing back from nature towards savagery”, as a comment under Amnesty International’s tweet about Istanbul Pride Walk.

Following Altuntaş’s homophobic statements Pink Life Association has applied to the Ombudsman Institution.

TIHEK Law itself is discriminatory!

TİHEK was established by a law published in 2016. The decision making body of the institution was defined to be a Human Rights and Equality Board in Turkey.

The institution discriminates against LGBTI+ individuals as it ignores discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Turkish law bans all discrimination based on sexuality, race, color, language, religion, sect, philosophical and political view, ethnic origin, wealth, birth, marital status, health condition, disability and age. Yet the law does not include sexual orientation and gender identity.

How was TİHEK founded?

Laws drafted on the establishment of Human Rights and Equality Institution of Turkey were examined by GNAT Human Rights Commission on February 2016. CHP and HDP’s demand to add “sexual orientation and gender identity” to the law was not accepted in a homophobic reaction from AKP. HDP subsequently withdrew from the  commission’s work.

The draft excluding sexual orientation and gender identity based discrimination could have been sent to the lower commission, yet was forwarded to the Assembly to be voted directly after the commission’s review, due to AKP’s persistence. Thus, the detailed examination of the draft by the lower commission was prevented. Neither civil society nor the opposition parties were allowed sufficient time to present their motions.

There were arguments at the commission meetings for the draft prepared by the government, which neglects LGBTI individuals and their demands while banning discrimination based on sexuality, race, color, language, religion, sect, philosophical and political view, ethnic origin, wealth, birth, marital status, health condition, disability and age

50 LGBTI organizations published a joint statement, saying “Do not discriminate against the gays, bisexuals, trans and intersex individuals in the Human Rights and Equality Institution Law!”

Civil society organizations started a petition against the Law Draft on the Human Rights and Equality Institution which excludes human rights platforms from the procedure and discriminates against LGBTI individuals.

Organizations addressed GNAT, stating “We, as the CSOs working for human rights, struggle against discrimination and equality in Turkey, would like to call attention to the fact that there is no possibility for the structure and framework envisioned by the draft to realize the aims and functions indicated in its premises”.

Related contents:

Hatred at TİHEK symposium: “Indecencies such as (being) LGBT…”

Turkish Human Rights Institution legitimizes human rights violations!

 

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