A thousand protest after two injured in attack on LGBT nightclub in Croatia
Around a thousand people have taken to the streets of Croatia’s capital after two people were injured in an attack on an LGBT club.
An attack released tear gas into the Super Super nightclub located in the Trnje neighbourhood of the country’s capital, Zagreb.
Two people suffered minor injuries in the attack, and several others were injured as people panicked to get out of the venue.
Now around a thousand people have taken to the streets of Zagreb with rainbow flags and other Prideful messages to “protest against hatred and violence”.
The demonstration was organised by the Zagreb Pride group, which called the attack a “brutal and barbarian attack on human lives.”
The conservative government in a statement said it would “firmly oppose any form of violence and hate speech, as well as radical, religious and gender discrimination.”
Banners read that “we don’t tolerate intolerance”, and “we are unstoppable”.
Speaking to AFP, one 60-year-old man Boris Kladar said: “There are fears of society’s radicalisation.”
The Zagreb Pride association has called the crime a direct hate attack on the LGBT community. The group called for authorities to condemn the attack and to catch the perpetrators quickly.
The substance was released into the club at 3.30am, and police since confirmed that they are treating the incident as a criminal investigation.
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The group stressed the importance for a “prompt” investigation to bring justice for “this physical assault on citizens and take all appropriate measures in order to ensure peace, security and human rights for LGBT people in Zagreb and Croatia.”
A statement said: “Over the past few months, we have been faced with the escalation of hatred in public, spurred by increasingly aggressive and louder discourse of the radical clerical rightwing circles, which is contrary to the constitutional values of Croatia, but which has been met with the tacit approval of the Croatian Government.”
The group went on to say the attack “clearly and unequivocally demonstrated how thin the line is between hatred and violence” and warned about the governments “unresponsiveness”.
The decision to stand strong in light of the attack was reaffirmed, and the group concluded the statement by pleading government officials to prove that “hatred and violence” are not Croatian values.
“We will persist in the fight for human rights and will not be silenced by tear gas.
“We urge Prime Minister Andrej Plenković, interior Minister Vlaho Orepić and the government to resolutely, loudly and clearly condemn this act of violence and hate crime directed against human rights of LGBT persons, citizens of the Republic of Croatia, and thereby show that hatred and violence are not the values of our society.”