Lambda Istanbul

Press Release by LGBTI Organizations on the Constitutional Draft

We are insistent in our demand to include “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” in the Constitution’s article on “equality”

Source: http://bit.ly/16SG2eg

#AnayasadaLGBT

As the lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, and intersex (LGBTI) movement, we have been sharing our demand to include the expressions “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” to the Constitution’s article on “equality” with decision-makers and the public since 2001. We have organized campaigns and explained our demands to NGOs and political parties in the effort to outlaw discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity at a Constitutional level and for the recognition of LGBTI people as equal citizens. The Constitution’s article on equality exists to protect the rights of individuals against social discrimination. Obscure terms such as “general morality” and “disparity from the Turkish family structure” in the Constitution of 12 September 1980 coup cause the extortion of our rights. We are struggling to ensure the protection of our fundamental rights and to make sure these rights do not fall prey to the biases of legal administrators.

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Yasemin Öz: If being a homosexual were a choice, nobody would choose this much oppression and violence.

Source: Aslı Öktener Köse, “Yasemin Öz: Eşcinsel olmak seçilebilseydi, kimse bu kadar zulmü ve şiddeti seçmezdi,” (“Yasemin Öz: If being a homosexual were a choice, nobody would choose this much oppression and violence,”) T24, August 13, 2013, http://t24.com.tr/yazi/yasemin-oz-escinsel-olmak-secilebilseydi-kimse-bu-kadar-zulmu-ve-siddeti-secmezdi/7211

Yasemin Öz: If being a homosexual were a choice, nobody would choose this much oppression and violence.

One of the groups at the forefront during the Gezi Park protests was the LGBT. We followed them closely with their creative banners, extraordinary chants and rainbow flags in their hands.

To better understand the place of the LGBT movement and homosexuals in Turkey, we talked to lawyer Yasemin Öz who was given the Felipa de Souza award by the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission this year.

Öz has had a significant role in the creating of legal reports and documents and the recording of rights abuses, as a part of the struggle for LGBT rights which she has been a part of for over 18 years. Contemporaneously she has also been one of the spokespersons and managers of the Justice for Pınar Selek campaign.

Chairman of the Board of Kaos GL Association Yasemin Öz, who defines herself as a ‘lesbian feminist’, talked to us about the Felipe de Souza award, being a homosexual in Turkey and the LGBT experience in Gezi.

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