Velvele Reports: Elections in Turkey #6

We are publishing the 6th installment of our Elections 2023 Reports. With news reports published in English every week until the May 14 Elections, we aim to inform our readers in Turkey and in the Diaspora about the latest developments regarding LGBTQI+ and the elections in Turkey. We hope our reports will highlight various achievements of LGBTQI+ individuals and organizations in the field of politics while establishing an archive of the 2023 Elections. Please feel free to share these reports with your friends, families, and colleagues who are looking for more information on the upcoming elections and LGBTQI+ in Turkey.  

You can read the previously published reports from the link.


Interior Minister Soylu made implausible remarks about LGBTQI+s and their demands from the politicians in the aftermath of the elections. He claimed that LGBTQI+ people wanted to allow humans to marry animals. Earlier, he had also likened the elections “a coup attempt by the West” on the campaign trail. The elections are being organized by the government which is completely controlled by Soylu’s party, the AKP.

ÜniKuir, an organization which combats discrimination, violence, and hatred against LGBTQI+ at universities and aims to establish free and safe spaces for all university students, started disclosing its election manifesto. You can follow the organization here. 

SPoD’s “LGBTI+ Rights Protocol” reached 14 signatures. seven Yeşil Sol Party candidates signed the protocol. Erkan Baş became the first party leader to sign the protocol and joined five other TİP MP candidates, who signed the petition. Only one CHP MP candidate has signed the protocol yet.   

Diaspora voters started voting on April 27, and they will continue until May 9. Each voting station has its own times and dates

The week has been dominated by presidential candidates’ health conditions, and  political parties’ campaigns. After falling sick on live TV, President Erdoğan canceled his in-person appearances. He continued campaigning via TV appearances and attended virtual events. Kılıçdaroğlu is campaigning across the country at in-person gatherings, but his videos on social media, where he explains his campaign promises, expands his message. 

The Labor and Independence Alliance officially endorsed Kılıçdaroğlu for president. The Alliance holds a big portion of the Kurdish vote.  

Journalists and the opposition parties’ executives are warning voters against election fraud. A printing house in İstanbul printed fake CHP pamphlets which claim that the CHP will free Abdullah Öcalan, the jailed leader of the Kurdish movement. The CHP blames the AKP for them, since this was a tactic they used in the İstanbul and Ankara Municipality Elections in 2019. 

The police forces detained 125+ Kurdish activists, lawyers, NGO professionals, and artists in Amed with the allegation that they have ties with the PKK. Among the detainees is Ayten Dönmez, an MP candidate from the Yeşil Sol Party, detained after Interior Minister Soylu’s targeting remarks. 5 people from the CHP Youth Group were also detained in Amed.