Murdered Gay Teen In Turkey Shot 14 Times By Father And Uncle

A gay teenager identified only as “RA” was allegedly murdered by his uncle and father in Turkey because of his sexuality, reports the Hurriyet Daily News,

The men have been arrested for the killing, which took place in the southeastern province of Diyarbakir in July, but local members of the gay community say it was covered up by the victim’s powerful family: “We are subjected to violence, but there is no place where we can make a complaint or search for our rights,” said one unnamed source. “Police insult and swear at us, doctors make fun of us.”

At the time of his death, RA was staying at a friends house to avoid another violent encounter with his family, but his uncle dragged him back home where, after an arguement, his father shot him 14 times.

The boy’s father and uncle then abandoned his lifeless body by the side of the road.

The situation for LGBT people in Turkey is grim—while cities like Istanbul and Diyarbakir have large queer populations, most activity is underground. Openly identifying as gay can lead to harassment discrimination or, as evident here, violence. Courts have been known to lower sentences against perpetrators of hate murders against gay and transgender victims.

Though generally perceived as a moderate Muslim country, Turkey has also had its share of so-called “honor killings” of LGBT people. One of the most publicized cases took place in 2008, when 26-year-old student and activist Ahmet Yildiz was shot and killed outside a cafe near the Bosphorus strait.