Appeal to hold execution of “LGBTI events ban in Turkey” rejected by Administrative Court


The separate appeals of Kaos GL and Pink Life to halt the execution of Ankara Governorship’s indefinite ban on LGBTI events were both rejected by the 4th and 13th Administrative Courts arguing in their decision that “the ban will not cause unrecoverable or impossible results, and the decision is not unlawful”.

In their plea, the Governorship of Ankara addressed the state of emergency situation, recalled Article 15 of the Constitution on “stopping the use of fundamental rights and freedoms” and argued also that the ban does not violate international contracts and there was no violation of “core rights”. “The decision is legal” they said.

Kaos GL had demanded for the ban do be reversed, bringing into attention grounds used for the banning such as “social sensitivities and sensibilities”, “protection of public health and values” and “protection of the rights and freedoms of others”, arguing that it would cause irrecoverable results.

“Impacts of this unlawful action are ignored”

Kerem Dikmen, one of the lawyers who applied to the Administrative Court on behalf of Kaos GL, analyzed the decision of the Court. Reminding that even if Kaos GL had applied to the Court right after the decision, the Court gave the final decision on 25th of January, Dikmen said:

“The ban decision was given on 18th and announced on 19th of January. Kaos GL took action on January 20th to get a quicker result. We were wishing that the first investigation would be made as soon as possible, the lawsuit petition would be issued to the Governorship quickly, and accordingly duration for their response would be shorter. Additionally, we knew it is stated in the legislation that in the stop the execution cases 30-day response duration of the court shall be shortened.”

Underlying that even if the decision did not directly ban the activities of the associations, it turned into “banning of activities”, Dikmen said. “With the rejection of our appeal to stop the execution, the impact of this unlawful action is ignored.”

“What will the compensation of the events that cannot be held from now on be?”

Lastly, Dikmen analyzed the expression that “the ban decision will not cause unrecoverable or impossible results”: “Decision of halting the execution must be given in the case that both the ban is obviously illegal and it would cause unrecoverable results. It is not a judicial discretion, but a legal obligation. While rejecting the appeal, the court implies two things: The governorship has authority to ban events forever, and the compensation of the results is possible for the future. However, how it would be possible to compensate for an event that cannot be held in the first place? For example, our event planned to be held on International Women’s Day on 8 March cannot take place under this ban, so what will the alternative of this be?

“The right to move and the right to communicate for a person are similar to the right of an association to organize an event. In this respect, the current situation is that LGBTI associations in Ankara are detained, and even arrested. Therefore, this ban implies the same result for us.”