Turkish authorities arrest greater than 200 folks in Istanbul for banned delight parade

On Sunday, Turkish police broke up a banned delight rally in Istanbul, and arrested greater than 200 protesters and AFP photographers, based on journalists and organizers.

The governor’s workplace had banned the march round Taksim Sq. within the coronary heart of Istanbul, however protesters gathered close by below a heavy police presence forward of schedule.

Police arrested protesters and loaded them into buses. AFP journalists noticed 4 buses loaded with detainees, together with AFP’s chief photographer Bulent Kılıç.

Kilic, who was taken handcuffed from his again, was in police custody. He was additionally arrested throughout final yr’s Satisfaction March.

Police prevented the press from filming the Istanbul arrests, based on AFP journalists.

Turkey’s largest metropolis has banned the march since 2015, however giant crowds collect yearly to have a good time the top of Satisfaction Month. Organizers referred to as the ban unlawful.

“We do not hand over, we do not worry! We are going to proceed our actions in protected locations and on-line,” the Lesbian, Homosexual, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex Week Committee stated on Twitter.

Shortly earlier than the 5 p.m. rally started (1400 GMT), Kaos GL, a distinguished LGBT group, stated 52 folks had been arrested. The Prideweek fee later stated greater than 100 had been arrested.

There was no speedy data on the variety of arrests from the police or the governor’s workplace.

Photos on social media confirmed folks being searched and loaded onto buses, together with no less than one information photographer. The journalist union, DISK Basin-Is, stated “many” had been overwhelmed by the police.

Locals banged pots and pans from their home windows and balconies in a present of help as a police helicopter hovered overhead.

Steel fences and features of riot police surrounded the streets round Taksim Sq. and Istiklal Avenue within the Beyoglu district, the center of town’s buying and tourism sectors, in addition to a conventional gathering level for protesters.

Metro companies round Taksim Sq. had been closed for hours earlier than the march.

Turkey was as soon as one of many few Muslim-majority international locations that allowed delight parades. The primary was held in 2003, a yr after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s celebration got here to energy.

Lately, the federal government has adopted a harsh method to public occasions by teams that don’t signify their conservative spiritual views. The occasions of the Satisfaction had been accompanied by giant numbers of arrests and the usage of tear fuel and plastic pellets by the police.

Counter-demonstrations by nationalists and Islamists, who declare the homosexual group is a hazard to “Turkish values,” additionally threatened the protesters.

(France 24 with AFP and The Related Press)

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