Istanbul: The Turkish capital Ankara has banned the public showing of films and exhibitions related to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) issues, the governor’s office said on Sunday, citing public sensitivities.
The move is likely to deepen concern among rights activists and Turkey’s Western allies about its record on civil liberties under President Tayyip Erdogan’s Islamist-rooted AK Party.
“Starting from Nov. 18, 2017, concerning our community’s public sensitivity, any events such as LGBT… cinema, theatre, panels, interviews, exhibitions are banned until further notice in our province to provide peace and security,” the governor’s office said in a statement.
Authorities in Ankara had already banned a German gay film festival on Wednesday, the day before it was due to start, citing public safety and terrorism risks.
Two gay pride parades have been banned in Istanbul for the last two years running.
Unlike in many Muslim countries, homosexuality is not a crime in Turkey, but there is widespread hostility to it....