19. August 2015

Questions to the Commision: Police at Istanbul Pride

After the happenings during the Istanbul Pride Terry Reintke and her colleague Ska Keller put a common written question to the European Commission. The two Members of the European Parliament want to know:

In the context of the yearly Istanbul Pride Week, the Istanbul Pride Parade was announced to take place for the twelfth time on June 28, 2015. After having united around 60.000 LGTB activists in the last years, this the parade was being banned only 1,5 hours before the announced start by the governor of Istanbul. It was said that it was supposed to hurt religious feelings during Ramadan. Following that, making massive use of water cannons, tear gas and rubber bullets, the police prevented the activists from marching through Istiklal street first. Only after the announcement of a group of Parliamentarians to walk either way, it became possible for some people to walk. Still after that and in the whole evening the activists were exposed to repression and attacs by the authorities. Against this background we would like to know from the Commission:

  1. Are there EU-financed LGBT shelter projects or projects for supporting organisations from civil society that engage for LGBT rights?
  2. How does the Commission assess the police operation during the Pride Parade and what is the reaction of the EU delegation to the violence against peaceful demonstrators?
  3. What did the EU do on the spot and what actions will it take in the aftermath of the events?

We are looking forward to receiving a reply in the next weeks and will of course document it.