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Potential violence expected at Czech Pride

Christopher Brocklebank June 23, 2010
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The Czech city of Brno will host the country’s third gay pride festival this coming Saturday. However, organisers say that threats of organised violence have already appeared on some nationalist websites.

The first Queer Parade Brno in 2008 was not a success, as violent attacks by right-wing extremists occurred. Last year’s parade went off smoothly.

The European Parliament Intergroup on LGBT rights has sent a video message in support of the day and patrons include former Czech minister for human rights and minorities, Dzamila Stehlikova, now of the Government Council for Human Rights.

In a press release the organisers said, “Sadly, there is not only support for the parade. Several counter-events are planned. Among them the illegal gatherings of far right-wing groups.”

Mirek Zajdak, one of the parade organisers said, “They appeal to ‘decent’ people, however, the threats published on their websites are a disgrace. It gives us a reason to be prepared for problems. However, we are confident that the police will protect our legal gathering and will not tolerate any disturbance.”

The parade will gather for speeches at 1pm on Saturday before setting off through the historic streets of Brno, the Czech Republic’s second city. Jolana Navratilova, another of the organisers said, “We expect a high turnout. Security measures have been developed in close co-operation with the police and their special anti-conflict team. We believe that Brno Queer Parade 2010 will be a great success.

Related topics: Czech Pride, Czech Republic, Europe, LGBT rights

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