Yesterday, and for the third year in a row, the Turkish city of Istanbul banned its gay pride parade.

Istanbul city officials claim the ban was in response to the potential for violence against LGBTQ marchers. But, for over a decade, the parade took place without incident leading many observers to believe the threat of violence is merely an excuse used by the conservative government that doesn’t support the parade, or what it stands for.

To ensure the parade did not happen, police in Istanbul were on standby with water canons, and they clamped down on people attempting to unfurl anything that even resembled a rainbow flag. They also fired rubber bullets to disperse would-be marchers, and detained a number of them.

This is not normal for an EU member state.

It’s Monday, June the 26th, 2017.

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