Council of Europe supports Belgrade Pride 2013
Reposted from B92: http://www.b92.net/eng/news/society.php?yyyy=2013&mm=09&dd=05&nav_id=87560
STRASBOURG -- The Council of Europe (CoE) has announced that this organization supports the Belgrade Pride 2013 gay parade.
The organization stressed that, under the European Convention, states have a duty to protect the participants of all demonstrations.
CoE Commissioner for Human Rights Nils Muiznieks sent a letter of support to the organizers of the Pride Parade in which he said that the freedoms of expression and peaceful assembly are fundamentals of democratic societies and are enshrined in Article 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which applies to all persons, including LGBTI persons.
"Under the European Convention, states also have a positive duty to protect the participants of a demonstration, even if this demonstration may annoy persons opposed to the ideas or claims that the demonstration seeks to promote," he noted.
Muiznieks stated that in his letter addressed to the prime minister of Serbia in October 2012, following the ban of the 2012 Belgrade Pride Parade, he drew the authorities' attention to the adopted principles.
"I also stressed that a general ban of a peaceful demonstration can only be justified if there is a real danger of disorder which cannot be prevented by reasonable and appropriate measures," the commissioner added.