13th Istanbul Pride Week

Press Statement for Istanbul 2015 LGBTI Pride March

Greetings to all those who have embraced our path as their path, our struggle as their struggle!

The 2015 Istanbul LGBTI Pride March has been banned at the last minute and without prior notice by the Istanbul Governorship on account of Ramadan.

The police have attacked the participants, which was expected to be approximately 100,000 people, with pepper gas, rubber bullets and TOMAs [militarized police vehicles commonly deployed against civilian activists and protesters -Trans.].

With our self-respect at stake, we resisted. We resisted with our dances, our songs and our love!

Love will win!

We want to share with you the press statement that we would have shared if the attacks had not occurred:


Medeniyet University Rector Criticizes Bosphorus University for Hosting Boston Gay Men’s Chorus and Gets Response from Student Group

The chancellor of the University of Medeniyet [“Modernity”], M. İhsan Karaman, reacted to the Boston Gay Men’s Chorus concert in Istanbul. The response came from the Bosphorus University’s Council of Student Representation.

Source: Bianet, “Sayın Rektörüm Ne Olacak Ayol” [“Aww My Dear Chancellor, So What?!”], 18 June 2015, http://m.bianet.org/bianet/lgbti/165424-sayin-rektorum-ne-olacak-ayol

Boston Gay Men’s Chorus, one of the prominent choruses in the US, was to arrive at Zorlu Performing Arts Center for a concert on 27 June [2015], a day before the 13th LGBTI Pride Parade. Vahdet, a newspaper in Turkey, carried the concert to its headlines as “Perversion Runs Free,” in which it called for a boycott against Zorlu Holding and pointed out both Zorlu Holding and Kaos GL as targets[1]. Consequently, ticket sales were halted.

Following the cancellation of the concert, with the efforts by the Bosphorus University LGBTI Studies Club, it was announced that the concert was going to be held at Bosphorus University’s South [Main] Campus.

“Concert in freedom in a free university!”

Screen Shot 2015-06-20 at 05.14.34İhsan Karaman reacted to the news, saying “We are waiting for the thousands of followers of Bosphorus University’s Council of Student Representation to protest the strategic efforts to paint homosexuality as if it were cute! NO to the gay concert at the Bosphorus!”

The Council of Student Representation replied: “Aww My Dear Chancellor, So What?! Concert in freedom in a free university!”

The Boston Gay Men’s Chorus will be in Istanbul [at Bosphorus University’s Main Campus -Trans.] on Saturday June 27th at 6:30pm. The concert will be open to public and free of charge. A sound system will be set up at the 1,500-people capacity venue for those who cannot find a seat.

[1] Turkey has a history of political violence, hate crimes, and political assassinations that followed a governmental authority figure and/or mainstream media singling out a person or a group out as rightfully injurable with impunity. –Trans.