Turkey’s President Erdoğan And His First Lady Dine With Transgender Icon Bülent Ersoy

bulTurkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has been pictured dining with Turkish singer and transgender icon Bülent Ersoy, hours after  security forces violently dispersed a Trans Pride march in Istanbul.

When authorities cancelled LGBT Pride events citing security reasons, members of Turkey’s LGBT community perceived this as a veiled move to restrict their visibility.

Dozens of trans activists took to the streets of Istanbul on Sunday, in defiance of the ban and were dispersed by police and some were subdued with tear gas and rubber bullets.

Following the event, though, Erdogan himself was seen dining opposite one of the most recognizable figures from Turkey’s transgender community. Ersoy was invited iftar meal , hosted by Erdogan and his wife Emine and attended by other Turkish artists and athletes, whom Erdoğan urged to help build the country’s cultural and sports infrastructure.