Istanbul governor denies giving Grup Yorum permission for a concert

The Istanbul Governor's Office said on June 1 that they had not permitted a concert by Grup Yorum, refuting an announcement by the leftist band. Two of Grup Yorum's members died recently after death fasts to demand that the bans on the band's concerts are lifted and terrorism charges against members are removed.

Duvar English

The Istanbul Governor's Office has denied giving permission to Grup Yorum to give its long-awaited concert, refuting an earlier announcement by the leftist band of an August event.

"Claims that the governor's office has permitted the application for a concert on August 9 in Yenikapı Meeting Area are incorrect. The governor's office has not issued a permit," the governor's statement said on June 1.

Grup Yorum tweeted on June 1 that they would hold a free and open concert on August 9, a cause that two of their band members recently died for.

Band member Helin Bölek died on April 3 after 288 days on a death fast, while İbrahim Gökçek died on May 7, only two days after ending a 323-day hunger strike.

The musicians demanded that the bans on their band be lifted and that they be allowed to perform again, that their cultural center not be raided anymore and that their band members' names be cleared of terror charges.

Grup Yorum member İbrahim Gökçek dies two days after ending death fastGrup Yorum member İbrahim Gökçek dies two days after ending death fast

Founded in 1985 as a reaction to the 1980 military coup and the subsequent military policies, Grup Yorum is known with its leftist stance and songs about political issues in Turkey.

The group has always been vocal about human rights violations and freedoms in the country, prompting authorities to accuse them of being “members of terrorist groups” often.

Death fasting Turkish musician Helin Bölek diesDeath fasting Turkish musician Helin Bölek dies