MP Petras Gražulis Promises to Fight Homosexuals Once Again
2013 01 22
The MP Petras Gražulis, who is currently in the governing coalition, will seek to prohibit ‘homosexual propaganda’ in Lithuania anew. According to the MP, it will be his response to the March for Equality in Vilnius, which is organized by the Lithuanian Gay League (LGL) in July, 2013. Mr. Gražulis is planning to propose a new bill in spring, when the Parliament will starts its sessions. He will also seek to disrupt the organization of the Pride events. Will Appeal against the Municipal Decision before the Court The Vilnius City Municipality has offered LGL to organize the Pride event either as a rally in one of the city squares, or to move the March for Equality to the Upės Street. According to the municipal authorities, the law enforcement officers would not be able to secure the safety of the participants in case the March For Equality takes place in the Central Avenue. The Baltic Pride March 2010 was organized in the Upės Street as well. The participants were protected by the great numbers of policemen, the territory was cordoned and the participants arrived and left the site by the ordered buses. Despite the security measures, the participants in the Pride were confronted with the counter protestors. Several MPs, including Mr. Gražulis, sought to disturb public order and were forced to leave the site by the police officers. Petras Gražulis does not know yet, whether he will participate in the March for Equality this year. However, he promises to do everything that the Pride does not take place. “I will apply to the Municipality so that the permission is not granted; if it is granted, I will appeal before the court in order to annul it,” – says Mr. Gražulis. A Bill against Gays will be Proposed During his previous tenure, the MP Petras Gražulis sough to prohibit ‘homosexual propaganda’. However, his ideas were not supported by many MPs. He sought to amend the Code of Administrative Violations – these amendments were rejected only after an active lobbying by human rights defenders. Mr. Gražulis sought to introduce an administrative punishment for ‘homosexual propaganda’, ranging from 580 to 2900 euros. Petras Gražulis also sought to initiate a national referendum in order to include the prohibition of ‘homosexual propaganda’ in the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania. However, this attempt failed as well. However, Mr. Gražulis is going to try his luck once again.