Serbian authorities have banned the EuroPride march, its organizers announced on Tuesday. A march for the rights of people from the LGBTQ community was supposed to take place in Belgrade on Saturday. TASR informs about it based on the AFP report.
In this Sept. 18, 2021, file photo, participants carry a large rainbow flag in front of the parliament building during the annual LGBTQ rights march in Belgrade.
“Serbian police have banned this year’s EuroPride march by giving an official notice to the organizers,” the official Belgrade Pride march social media account said. The organizers will use all available legal means to reverse this decision.
Tensions have been rising in Belgrade over the march since Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic’s announcement in late August called for its cancellation. He listed several reasons, including tensions with the former province of Kosovo and concerns about rising energy and food prices.
His words outraged the LGBTQ community in Serbia. Its representatives promised that even in case of cancellation, they would organize the march on the planned date, that is, on Saturday, September 17. The organizers condemned Vučič’s statements and stated that the government does not have the authority to cancel the event.
The formal cancellation of the march came only a few days after a demonstration against EuroPride in Belgrade, where, according to AFP, motorcycle gangs, Orthodox priests and far-right nationalists demanded the cancellation.
Same-sex marriages are not allowed in Serbia. In addition, according to AFP, homophobia is still deeply rooted in the country, although some progress has been made in the fight against discrimination against people from the LGBTQ community in recent years.
Belgrade’s Pride march was first held in 2001 and then in 2010, when it was marred by violence following attacks by far-right groups. Since 2014, Pride has been held regularly in Belgrade, but many members of the security forces have to assist with it.
EuroPride, a regular annual event of the LGBT community, is always hosted by a different European city.
Source: Pravda – Správy by spravy.pravda.sk.
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