TUI Sensatori Barut Fethiye
A gay British couple claim they were spat on and called homophobic slurs by a heterosexual couple after asking the man and woman to have quieter sex.
Speaking to PinkNews, the two men — who wished to remain anonymous — said they were on vacation at the TUI Sensatori Barut Fethiye in Turkey last October when they heard the couple in the next room “having very loud sex.”
The men, one of whom was identified as David, complained to reception, who sent security to the straight couple’s room — though no one answered.
David then complained to a representative from travel company TUI, who said the straight couple would receive a warning.
The following day, the couple once again had loud sex, with the woman “screaming so loud it was echoing down the hotel corridor,” David wrote in an email complaint viewed by PinkNews.
David’s partner confronted the couple as they left their room, asking them to be quieter. The couple started “mouthing off” at the men, who retreated to their room and closed the door, at which point the heterosexual male “tried to physically kick door down saying: ‘Fucking come out here you pussy boy faggot, you don’t speak to my wife like that.’”
David contacted reception again, and they agreed to move the men to another room, where they remained for the night out of fear of retaliation.
But he said that at breakfast the next morning, the straight couple accosted them at their table.
“Bloke walked up to my partner as we were eating breakfast in the restaurant,” David wrote in his complaint, “shoved table into him, then spat in my partner’s face and said: ‘You two are an abomination against the Bible.’”
After complaining once again to the TUI representative, the men were told that guests are allowed “one strike” before any action is taken. They said they tried contacting local police, but were told that being spat on does not constitute assault.
The men ultimately decided to move to a neighboring hotel, out of fear for their safety.
TUI told David that “correct procedures had taken place” and that “should anything have escalated any further, then the staff would have taken the next step” with the straight couple.
They were told to contact police in the United Kingdom if they wished to “pursue this matter further.”
But in a statement to PinkNews, the company apologized for the incident, saying the man who spat on them “was removed from the hotel.”
The spokesperson added: “We’d like to reassure customers that we take matters like this extremely seriously and instances like this are extremely rare.”
While the United Kingdom has robust hate crime laws that protect LGBTQ people from “verbal abuse, intimidation, threats, harassment, assault and bullying,” Turkey has no such protections in place.
The country has banned Istanbul’s Pride Parade for five years in a row, claiming security concerns, and has previously shot tear gas and rubber bullets at LGBTQ people who tried to march.
Turkey also banned a gay film festival from taking place, claiming that it could incite terrorist attacks.
LGBTQ people have no discrimination protections in the country, and there is no legal recognition of same-sex relationships — either domestic or foreign.
The complaint against TUI also comes just weeks after another gay British couple branded their honeymoon cruise on a TUI ship a “nightmare.”
Chance and Dan Walton-Ashmore said they were left “heartbroken” after receiving “homophobic abuse from TUI staff” on the company’s Marella Discovery ship in December.
Staff allegedly refused to provide the men a double bed, instead giving them a twin room with two single beds, despite their booking saying honeymoon.
The men claim that when they asked staff to swap their rooms, “they simply pointed and laughed at us,” they told the Mirror.
They said the abuse continued elsewhere, including bar staff not serving them, and “laughing and also pointing at us” when they danced with one another.
In a statement at the time, TUI said it was investigating the incident and would be “doing everything possible to address the customers’ concerns.”
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