European solidarity with LGTBQ activists in Belgrade
The Federation of Young European Greens (FYEG) and Zelena Omladina (ZOS) - FYEG´s Serbian Member organisation - were strongly supporting the planned Pride Parade that was due to take place on Saturday, the 6th of October, in Belgrade, Serbia. LGTBQ organisations and activists from Serbia have worked hard to organise this event, which was banned due to so-called security problems. Again homophobes has succeded in preventing a non-violent protest from happening. In order to show our solidarity, FYEG and ZOS, together with the Green European Foundation and the Heinrich-Böll Foundation, have organised a seminar with more than 50 activists from all over Europe on the topic of Queer Theory in Belgrade, intended to coincide with the Parade.
For FYEG and ZOS, it is completely unacceptable that the Pride Parade has been banned.
Terry Reintke, Co-Spokesperson of FYEG, commented: "We are more than disappointed that the Pride Parade in Belgrade was cancelled for yet another year! This is a sad day for all LGTBQ movements all over Europe. Nationalist and homophobic parts of society cannot have such a power over the freedom of speech and assembly!"
Katarina Pavlovic, Co-Spokesperson of ZOS, added: "We are part of a civil society movement that is striving to change the situation in Serbia and that rejects violent threats against people that are demonstrating their support of the LGTBQ population. Since the same method of organising the Pride has failed again in Belgrade, additional forms of a unified struggle and fight against repression have to be found. This fight needs to be continuous, and not only during the Pride Week, and preparation of the Belgrade Pride."
Nikola Mladenovic, Member of the Serbian Young Greens, concluded: "The Serbian authorities have shown their lack of understanding of the importance of this event for people all around Europe. It could have been a sign of hope for the LGTBQ community in Serbia, and throughout the Balkan region. The Serbian authorities failed to provide even this hope. However, we will not stop our fight for equal rights and emancipation for LGTBQ people everywhere!"