LGBTI People’s Search for Justice Continues

Source: “LGBTİ bireylerin adalet arayışı sürüyor,” (“LGBTI people’s search for justice continues,”) siyasihaber, 21 January 2014,

SPoD LGBTI, Hevi LGBTI, and independent activists repeated their demands for justice at the fifteenth hearing of the Ahmet Yıldız case, who was allegedly killed by his father in Üsküdar, Istanbul in 2008.

LGBTI activists made a statement after the hearing:

“According to the allegations of the Üsküdar Public Prosecutor and the wide-spread opinion, Ahmet Yıldız was killed by his father on 15 July 2008. Despite the repeated demands for a red notice to be issued regarding the defendant Yahya Yıldız since 2008, this demand was only accepted after the tribunal of judges was changed. No results have been reached in the capture of the defendant by the fifteenth hearing on 17 January 2014.

Lawyer Fırat Söyle and several lawyers from the Kartal Lawyers Association and LGBTI activists attended the hearing. Söyle requested the technical surveillance of family members in order to capture of the defendant because the defendant may have returned from Northern Iraq. The tribunal stated that a technical surveillance order may be issued for the defendant’s phone; however, other surveillance activities would be illegal.

The board recorded Fırat Söyle’s request but did not take any steps towards fulfilling this demand. The board decided to wait for the arrest warrant to be executed. The next hearing of the case was postponed until 29 April 2014 9:30 AM.

The reluctance of the tribunal to accept joint plaintiff Fırat Söyle’s requests is preventing an effective investigation. Furthermore, a high number of private security personnel and police officers were present in the court, harassing activists and removing them from the courthouse after the hearing. These are clear indications of the overtly negative political attitude towards LGBT people’s demands for justice.

As LGBTI activists, despite all the barriers and harassment, we shouted ‘Damn fascism’ in the hallways of the courthouse and said ‘Don’t be silent, shout, gays exist,’ ‘Don’t be silent, shout, trans people exist.’ We do not trust the existing justice system, yet we will be followers of this case until the end. We are not abandoned, wrong or alone. We will continue our national and international struggle for justice until hate crimes stop and the hate crimes legislation is passed. Killing a person in the name of honor is the biggest example of inhumanity.”

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