Openly gay men are not welcome in the Turkish army. However, a recruit must go through a humiliating process to prove he is gay, the BBC reports:
Ahmet, a young man in his 20s, told officials he was gay at the first opportunity after he was called up, as he and other conscripts underwent a health check.
"They asked me if I liked football, whether I wore woman's clothes or used woman's perfume," he says. ''I had a few days' beard and I am a masculine guy – they told me I didn't look like a normal gay man.''
He was then asked to provide a picture of himself dressed as a woman.
''I refused this request,'' he says. ''But I made them another offer, which they accepted.'' Instead he gave them a photograph of himself kissing another man. Ahmet hopes this will give him what he needs – a "pink certificate", which will declare him homosexual and therefore exempt from military service.
Another man, Gokhan, went prepared with explicit photographs of himself
''The face must be visible,'' says Gokhan. ''And the photos must show you as the passive partner.''
The photographs satisfied the military doctors. Gokhan was handed his pink certificate and exempted from military service. But it was a terrible experience, he says, ''And it's still terrible. Because somebody holds those photographs. They can show them at my village, to my parents, my relatives.''