Jerusalem gays want June pride parade
Police in the Israeli city of Jerusalem have said they are reviewing a request to allow a gay pride event this summer.
Last year, the parade had to be cancelled. Members of gay organisation Open House held a series of other pride events, which prompted rioting from ultra-Orthodox Jews.
The events of last summer were overshadowed by Israel’s decision to attack Lebanon.
This meant that many people stayed away from the pride events, while other potential participants found themselves called up as army reservists.
“This is the main human rights demonstration which will be held in Jerusalem this year and it is planned for every citizen,” Ayelet Shnur, chairwoman of Open House, told YNet News.
Open House have asked for permission to hold the parade on 21st June.
Gay Israeli Arabs are also planning an event – the first ever conference. It will be held in the city of Haifa, and around 100 delegates are expected to attend on 28th March.
It has been organised by a lesbian group in the city.
Although there is acceptance of gay lifestyle among most Israeli Jews, for the country’s Arabs there is little open expression of their sexuality. Islam regards homosexuality as not just sinful but destructive.
“Lesbians need treatment, they don’t need to spread their strange ideas in the Arab community,” Mohammed Zbidat, a spokesman for the Islamic Movement, told AP.