BELGRADE – Despite the ban of the Pride Parade, about 200 members of LGBT community gathered last night in the Knez Milos street, in front of the Government of Serbia building. The gathering went without incidents.
Participants carried flags with rainbow colors and walked toward the center of the city accompanied by the police patrols. At the protest march was also noticed the Police Commissioner of Belgrade Veselin Milic.
“We will not be removed, because we are not those who are to be removed from the streets, or isolated. This is just a first step so we could have celebration in few years, instead of hiding,” said member of the organizing committee Maja Micic.
As Tanjug learned in MIA last night, there were no incidents or arrests, and members of the police accompanied protest members while they were leaving the protest.
The participants carried banners with words “This is Pride, This is Serbia”, “Victory, Victory”, “Long Live Love”.
The group then stopped in front of the National Assembly shouting “We have Pride”, and then left sometime before midnight.
The protest walk went without incidents, except few verbal conflicts, and the traffic in the center of the city, which was partially closed at the junction of Boulevard and Kneza Milosa street, was soon back to normal.
A member of the organizing committee of the “Pride Parade” Goran Miletic said that the only goal of the last night’s gathering of LGBT activists is the demonstration of the basic human rights.
“The goal is to show that we also have the right to gathering, that freedom of gathering has to be guaranteed to all the citizens who wish to organize it. Today that freedom was denied to us and tried to enjoy it tonight,” Miletic told Tanjug.
Playwright Biljana Srbljanovic, who joined the protest, said that denying rights to citizens to walk, show their flag and be proud of what they are cannot be justified.
“This has more sense than holding a “Pride” that would be locked in a park and without knowing if it will be held or not to the last moment. These are the citizens in their city, they went out to show that they have the right to live,” Srbljanovic told Tanjug.
Last night’s gathering was organized to protest the government’s decision to ban Pride scheduled for today. The participants were notified of the protest via text messages and social networks.