For the third year in a row, Moldovan authorities have banned the gay Pride march in the capital of Chisinau.
Now activists in the country are asking for a show of support for the gay community here to protest outside the London embassy this Friday as a show of solidarity.
LGBT activist group GenderDoc-M has decided to take to the streets of Chisinau in defiance of the ban.
Executive director Boris Balanetkii said:
“We can take no more abuse of our dignity, self-respect and belief in human rights ideals that we cannot let go.
“The idea is to go out with brooms in specifically marked T-shirts to “sweep out” homophobia from our country.
“We are writing to you because Moldova has an embassy in your country.
“We therefore ask you to manifest the solidarity with us and around the same time, 15.00 your local time, on Friday 27th April, as we go on the Chisinau streets (despite security risks).
“Protest before the Moldovan embassy in your country, preferably with brooms, but if that is not possible you can let your activist imagination flow!”
A government committee banned Friday’s march on the grounds that it could pose a public disorder threat, that it would promote sexual propaganda and that it would undermine Moldovan Christian values.
The decision comes despite the ruling of the Moldovan Supreme Court last December that a previous ban on the LGBT Pride march was illegal.
Pride events are taking place this week as part of the Council of Europe’s “All Different – All Equal” campaign and will include cultural and entertainment activities, including an open discussion on religion and homosexuality.
The festival will also stage the premiere of the Vagina Monologues in Moldova, mini-football matches and concerts.
GenderDoc-M have called on the EU to intervene on their behalf and pressure the Moldovan authorities to offer them the right to assembly and free speech.
Moldova is not part of the EU, but is influenced by its neighbour Romania, an EU member state since January 2007.
The small landlocked country of four million people gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991.
For details of the location of the Moldovan Embassy in London click here