The leaflets claim that homosexuality is a “despicableness” caused by the “British deep state.”
Homophobic leaflets handed out in Alsancak in the İzmir region of Turkey have blamed the “British deep state” for homosexuality. The leaflets added that homosexuality was a “despicableness” and that it can be “turned away by convincement.”
Bianet also reported that leaflets calling homosexuality a “perversion” were distributed in the Turkish capital of Ankara on the same day. According to Pembe Hayat (Pink Life), the leaflets also claimed that homosexuality was “being forced on people under the cover of ‘human rights’ and youngsters shouldn’t fall into this trap.”
It added: “We don’t want men doing makeup, we want Atatürkist men who protect their nation.”
Bianet also reported that an anonymous man told Pembe Hayat: “Even though it was removed from the section of diseases in DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) library, I don’t understand how they can think that homosexuality can be change[d] by means of ‘convincement’ in 2018.”
They added: “It’s obvious that these people are far from science and love.”
The anonymous person also said: “While very nice developments occur about the LGBTIs in the world, marriages become legal, adopting homophobic attitudes and distributing such leaflets in Turkey means targeting people.
“For how long will LGBTI+s have to hide their loves? For how long will they be subjected to disgusting looks and hate speeches just for wandering hand in hand? No one can decide who will love who. Rainbow will always exist.”
Eray Deniz, an openly gay man, told a local news website, KaosGL.org: “These posters are very dangerous for us. It triggers homophobia. I’m worried about walking even on the street. This is a humiliating situation. It’s never acceptable. We will pursue this situation.”
Pictures of the leaflets on the website showed a Pride flag with a cross through it. Other images showed Neil Patrick Harris with his family, and a screenshot from Disney’s Star Vs The Forces of Evil which showed a male same-sex couple kissing, all with a cross through them.
Although homosexuality is legal in Turkey, last year all LGBTQ events were banned in the capital of Ankara to “provide peace and security.” And Turkey’s annual Pride parade in Istanbul has been banned for the past four years.
Despite this, hundreds managed to march in this year’s Istanbul Pride despite the ban. However, the event only lasted for 40 minutes before authorities cracked down on the march, with reports suggesting tear gas was used to disperse the group.