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As reported by the Huffington Post, Serbia will host its first gay Pride Parade since 2010. According to the news report, Serbian officials have banned the parade for the past three years because of attacks by nationalists and ‘football hooligans’ on pride marchers in 2010.
The sudden decision to ‘green light’ the parade comes from Serbia’s recent moves to join the European Union—where the EU has put pressure on Serbia to commit to basic human rights. The EU, has stated that this event ‘will test of the Balkan country’s commitment to the fundamental freedoms espoused by the 28-member bloc.’
Just this month, a German gay rights activist was brutally attacked in Serbia, where homophobia is prevalent within the state, political parties, as well as the church.
In response to Serbia’s plans to host an LGBT+ pride parade, Patriarch Irinej, leader of Serbia’s Orthodox Church has condemned Pride on Tuesday, asking why, “if homosexuality was propagated, then why not also pedophilia, which is widespread in the West, and incest?’’
Serbian officials have not commented on how they will prevent attacks on the planned gay pride parade.