ILGA-Europe condemns the ban of Belgrade Pride 2011
The Belgrade Pride 2011 march, which was planned to take place on Sunday 2 October, has been banned by the Serbian National Security Council according the news website B92.
The organisers of Belgrade Pride 2011 insisted that they will not cancel the Pride march - despite the threats from right winged groups, who were planning counter demonstrations on the same day. The Pride event in Belgrade has received strong international support but at the same time there was an increasing internal pressure on the organisers to cancel the Pride march due to high security risk. Interior Minister Ivica Dačić recommended earlier today that police should ban the upcoming Pride Parade, if the organisers did not cancel it.
ILGA-Europe regrets the decision from the Serbian authorities, and will bring it to the attention of the relevant officials of the European institutions to take further actions.
Lilit Poghosyan, Senior Programmes and Policy Officer who is leading the advocacy work on the Western Balkans said: ‘The government of Serbia has a duty to protect the rights of the LGBT community to freely assemble and express their political claims. Banning of the Pride march by referring to the security risks is a clear failure of Serbian authorities. It signals that Serbia is has a long way to go to become a country that can pride itself not only by its national identity but also by its human rights record’.