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Turkey’s proposals for hate crimes legislation must include sexual orientation and gender identity

Written declaration No. 565 | Doc. 13410 | 30 January 2014

Mr Jonas GUNNARSSON, Sweden, SOC ; Ms Tina ACKETOFT, Sweden, ALDE ; Mr Mohammed AMEUR, Morocco ; Ms Khadija ARIB, Netherlands, SOC ; Mr Lennart AXELSSON, Sweden, SOC ; Mr Joe BENTON, United Kingdom, SOC ; Ms Teresa BERTUZZI, Italy, NR ; Mr Robert BIEDROŃ, Poland, SOC ; Ms Gülsün BİLGEHAN, Turkey, SOC ; Ms Delia BLANCO, Spain, SOC ; Ms Marjolaine BOUTIN-SWEET, Canada ; Ms Lise CHRISTOFFERSEN, Norway, SOC ; Mr Geraint DAVIES, United Kingdom, SOC ; Ms Béatrice FRESKO-ROLFO, Monaco, EPP/CD ; Ms Maria GIANNAKAKI, Greece, SOC ; Mr Antonio GUTIÉRREZ, Spain, SOC ; Ms Carina HÄGG, Sweden, SOC ; Mr Kent HÄRSTEDT, Sweden, SOC ; Mr Olivier HENRY, Belgium, SOC ; Ms Françoise HETTO-GAASCH, Luxembourg, EPP/CD ; Mr Mogens JENSEN, Denmark, SOC ; Ms Valentina LESKAJ, Albania, SOC ; Ms Marit MAIJ, Netherlands, SOC ; Ms Vesna MARJANOVIĆ, Serbia, SOC ; Ms Pirkko MATTILA, Finland, NR ; Ms Carina OHLSSON, Sweden, SOC ; Ms Sandra OSBORNE, United Kingdom, SOC ; Ms Carmen QUINTANILLA, Spain, EPP/CD ; Mr Indrek SAAR, Estonia, SOC ; Ms Laura SEARA, Spain, SOC ; Ms Maria Edera SPADONI, Italy, NR ; Mr Björn von SYDOW, Sweden, SOC ; Mr Vilmos SZABÓ, Hungary, SOC ; Mr Snorre Serigstad VALEN, Norway, UEL ; Mr Petrit VASILI, Albania, SOC ; Mr Klaas de VRIES, Netherlands, SOC ; Ms Nataša VUČKOVIĆ, Serbia, SOC ; Ms Olta XHAÇKA, Albania, SOC

Written Declaration No. 555 “The need for measures to counter transphobic and homophobic violence and discrimination in Turkey” drew attention to the high levels of hate-related murders of, and discrimination against, LGBTI people in Turkey.

The murder of 17-year-old Roşin Çiçek, and the trial of his father and two uncles for allegedly killing him because of his homosexuality, tragically highlight these concerns.

Against this background, it is shocking that the Turkish government’s December proposals for criminalising certain bias-motivated actions fail to include sexual orientation or gender identity among the list of discrimination grounds.

We emphasise again that an extensive government led programme of awareness raising, law reform (including particularly the inclusion of sexual orientation and gender identity in anti-hate crime and anti-discrimination measures), and the training of police and judiciary, are essential, if these serious human rights violations against LGBTI people are to be brought to an end.

We again call upon the Turkish government to implement such a programme, using the Committee of Ministers Recommendation on combating discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity as the framework.