Pop star Lady Gaga and a European rights official have condemned the attacks on Istanbul’s gay pride rally after security forces doused demonstrators with water cannon and tear gas.
Gay rights protesters dispersed after gathering at the city’s Taksim Square, an unusual flare-up as previous rallies had taken place without interference.
Organisers said the Turkish government only barred them from Taksim at the last minute, saying they could not gather there during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
The Istanbul Governor’s office said no permission was sought for the rally and security forces acted proportionately.
Istanbul? Who are these "leaders"! Stop attacking innocent happy people who are celebrating this is madness! This is inhumane!— Lady Gaga (@ladygaga) June 28, 2015
A message posted to Lady Gaga’s Twitter account urged Turkish authorities to “celebrate both Ramadan and Pride in PEACE”.
Governor! Set an example for people to celebrate both Ramadan and Pride in PEACE, instead of dividing with violence! #OnurYuerueyuesue— Lady Gaga (@ladygaga) June 28, 2015
The Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, Nils Muiznieks, also condemned the violence.