Aykan Erdemir, a parliamentarian from the Republican People’s Party, filed an official parliamentary question asking Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu to comment on the fatwa hotline of the Ministry of Religious Affairs. (PDF)
TO THE PRESIDENCY OF THE TURKISH GRAND NATIONAL ASSEMBLY
I present my questions below and request that they be answered in writing by Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu.
Asst. Prof. Dr. Aykan ERDEMİR
Member of Parliament from Bursa
In the Milli Gazete dated 25 November 2014, there was a news story about a meeting which the European Parliament had arranged in Tirana in connection with the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people, where a member of parliament, the Government Auditing Commission, and NGOs from Turkey participated.
In the aforementioned news story, it was alleged that an inquiry “concerning participation in the meeting” had been directed by the employees of the Milli Gazete to the Ministry of Religious Affairs’ Hello Fatwa Line, and that a reply had been received saying that “It is certainly a perversion and is forbidden by our religion. Those who give support to such a meeting in a positive sense have accepted spiritual responsibility [for this sin]. It is necessary to publish the evil of this through the agency of NGOs”; and the aforementioned fatwa was shared.
In this connection:
Was a question with the heading “concerning participation in the meeting” directed to the Ministry of Religious Affairs’ Hello Fatwa Line, as alleged in the aforementioned news story? If so, what kind of answer did the Ministry of Religious Affairs give?
From 2002 until now, how many questions, and questions about what subjects, have been addressed to the Hello Fatwa Line either by homosexual and transgender citizens and their family members or in connection with the condition of homosexual and transgender persons? In what form and with what content have answers been given to these inquiries?
What are the “religious and non-religious written sources” that the Ministry of Religious Affairs’ public services, including the Hello Fatwa Line, have taken or provided as references within the framework of the issue of discrimination, hate, and violence directed at homosexuals and transgender citizens? Do they include the human rights corpus, such as the “Universal Declaration of Human Rights” and other conventions and documents derived therefrom, the European Human Rights Convention, and the decisions of the European Court of Human Rights?
Source: Ömer Akpınar, “Trans kadına Meclis engeli: Mavi kimliğin varsa erkeksin!“ (“Trans woman prevented from entering the Turkish parliament: ‘If you have a blue ID, you are a man’”), KaosGL, 19 September 2014, http://www.kaosgl.org/sayfa.php?id=17552
A trans woman was discriminated against this morning [September 19, 2014] prior to a press conference to be held by the CHP (Republican People’s Party) MP Aykan Erdemir at the Turkish Grand National Assembly. The woman who wished to attend the meeting concerning LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans) rights was asked to go through security checkpoint designated for men on the grounds that she carried a blue identity card.
Buse Kılıçkaya from the Pink Life Association spoke with KaosGL.org about the incident that occurred at the security check before the press meeting:
“I have been going to the Grand National Assembly to attend these civil rights meetings since 2000. This morning we went through the pre-search without a problem; at the second search, there was a security detector marked as “woman” and I naturally chose that one. There was a commotion as they were searching my bag. I sensed that the security officer felt the need to confer with their friends about a matter. Since I had entered through here before, I assumed that the issue had something to do with the materials we brought, but that was not the case.”
Republican People’s Party (CHP) Parliament Member Aykan Erdemir’s speech at The Grand National Assembly of Turkey (TBMM) on 29 May 2013.
Note: Motion was rejected after parliamentary vote.
Distinguished members of the Parliament,
I respectfully salute the honorable parliament and our citizens who are watching us on TV and on their computer screens. For the sake of formality, I received permission to talk against the motion but now I will talk in favor of it.
“They could not find a place for my child in this huge world.” Distinguished members of Parliament, these are the words of the mother of our citizen with a different sexual orientation who was murdered in September 2010 in Bursa. “They could not find a place for my child in this huge world.”
Today, we are talking about opening a tiny space in this huge world to fit these parents’ children. Well, is there a tiny space for the ones who have been murdered by 12 stab wounds, by 40 stab wounds, or for the ones whose bodies have been inflicted by wounds that will not heal, whose wounded hearts will not heal?