Ankara governor bans LGBTI events ‘indefinitely’

Governorship of Ankara banned activities of LGBTT-LGBTI rights organisations, such as film screenings, theatre plays, panels, talks and exhibitions that “include certain social sensitivities and sensibilities,” read an official statement on its website.

LGBTI News provided full translation of the statement:

Press Statement Regarding the Ban Decision

It has been noticed through various social media and print and visual media outlets that in different locations around our city activities such as film screenings, cinevision, theater plays, panels, talks, exhibitions etc. which include certain social sensibilities and sensitivities by various civil society organizations under the name of LGBTT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual or transvestite) and LGBTI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex) are scheduled.

It was decided that the aforementioned social media shares might deliberately incite a certain segment of society with different characteristics of social class, race, religion, sect or region against another segment of society, that this might lead to imminent peril with regards to public security, that also it can harm the protection of other people’s rights and liberties, public health and morality as well as of public order, prevention of crime, and therefore there may be reactions and provocations against the groups and individuals taking part in the organization due to certain social sensibilities.

Due to these circumstances, from November 18, 2017 onwards, activities of LGBTT-LGBTI organizations such as film screenings, cinevision, theater plays, panels, talks, exhibitions which include certain social sensitivities and sensibilities in various locations around our city are banned by our Governorship, based on the Article 11/C of Law Of Provincial Administration No 5442, within the scope of measures to be taken for the provision of peace, security, right to physical integrity and the public order, following Article 17 of Law No. 2911 on Assembly and Demonstration Marches and Article 11/F of Law No. 2935 on State of Emergency.

We respectfully announce the ban to the public.

In the statement, Ankara governor’s office cited the state of emergency law issued after the 1980 military coup. Turkey has issued state of emergency after July 2016 coup attempt and extended it for five times.

Last year, Ankara governor’s office banned all gatherings for 45 days due to ‘terror alert’ before the Republic Day and the Day of Remembrance of Atatürk. In May, the office banned all gatherings after dark. In August, it banned all public protests, again citing terror threats, and in November, it extended the ban on public demonstrations for three months, to prevent protest events.