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Turkey’s LGBT fight uphill but not hopeless battle

While Turkey’s LGBT community faces significant challenges, events such as this year’s Gay Pride Parade in Istanbul and Turkey’s first transsexual beauty pageant indicate small yet significant steps are being made to secure LGBT rights.
Participants wearing masks attend a gay pride parade in central Istanbul June 29, 2014.   REUTERS/Osman Orsal (TURKEY - Tags: CIVIL UNREST SOCIETY POLITICS) - RTR3WB45
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Being a predominantly Muslim and conservative country, Turkey clearly is no haven for lesbians, gays, bisexuals or transsexuals. As Al-Monitor’s Verda Ozer has pointed out, the Islamist government of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has done its best to block attempts at enhancing LGBT rights.

At the same time, violence and institutionalized discrimination based on religious morality and homophobic prejudice is often just a step away for members of the transgender community.

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