At the Crossroads of Turkey’s Society: The transgender Candidate Esmeray

Zeynep Esmeray Ozadikti was born in 1972 in the Kars city, in the easternmost part of Turkey. She was ostracized by her own family because of her sexual identity and had to immigrate to Istanbul when she was 15. At the age of 18 she decided to become transgender. She started sex work when she couldn’t find a job because she was transsexual. She also joined LGBT organizations for trans rights in the 90s and was repeatedly detained and tortured. Between 2000-2002, she studied theater at the Mesopotamia Cultural Center. She staged her first play, “The Witch’s Pack, in 2007, and in the following years, he staged the plays “Ripped Bundle” (2010) and “Before cutted” (2014). She became a member of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) council in 2013. Esmeray joined TIP in 2019, became a TIP Istanbul deputy candidate in the elections to be held on 14 May.


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