Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called his opponents “pro-LGBT” and said at a campaign rally that “we will bury them in the ballot box.”
Erdogan held an election rally in Istanbul on Sunday (May 7) and, according to Reuters, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) and other parties in his coalition said they “cannot be pro-LGBT because the family is sacred to us.”
“We will bury those LGBT supporters in the ballot box,” Erdogan added.
He is head-to-head with the leader of the Republican People’s Party, Mal Kilikadaroglu, and – according to foreign policy – the CHP is “leading in many polls”. In the year It represents the biggest challenge to Erdogan’s leadership since becoming president in 2014.
With Turkey voting in presidential and parliamentary elections on May 14, it’s little surprise that Erdogan has ramped up his notorious anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric throughout his presidency.
“The family foundation is stable in this nation,” he said at a rally in Izmir last month. LGBT is not created in this country.
“Stand up like a man, that’s how our families are.”
Erdogan’s disdain for the LGBTQ+ community is well documented. In the past, he has labeled queer youth as vandals and his speech has left many Turkish LGBTQ+ people living in fear.
Turkey has become a hotbed for queer politicians, religious leaders and retailers who attack the LGBTQ+ community.
In September 2022, thousands took part in an anti-LGBTQ+ hate rally. People held signs that said, “Protecting the family is a matter of national security.”
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