Thousands of women gathered in İstanbul, İzmir and Ankara on Monday to mark International Women’s Day. A range of organisations and platforms participated in the Feminist Night March and rallied in the streets and squares.
They were joined by crowds in cities across the country, unifying demonstrators around issues such as women and LGBTI+ rights, femicide and civil rights. The gathering crowds appeared to be huge in most places. The size of a rally in İstanbul grew very fast, and marchers gathered in several streets in İzmir and Ankara.
Tens of thousands of women came together and marched in İstanbul. They walked past Sıraselviler street, several hundred feet away from Taksim Square, chanting, ”we are stronger together”, and ”We will not leave the streets at night”. Protesters then made their way to Karaköy.
Women also protested the appointed trustee policies of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government with the slogans.
In the march held in Ankara, women highlighted violence against women. “We are in revolt against the patriarchy, which increases violence against women”, said the protestors in their press statement. “We will not give up peace and equal rights for women”, they continued.
Despite the police blockade women in the Turkish capital insisted on their annual night march and they were able to march up to Yüksel Street.
The other Feminist Night March was organised in Izmir, located in the Aegean coast of the country. Women from Izmir who gathered for the march issued a press statement emphasising that they will increase the struggle for their rights. The protesting women in Izmir also stressed the importance of the Istanbul Convention and supported its implementation.