Kosovo just held its first official LGBT pride event and even the president turned up
LGBT activists in Kosovo are celebrating their first ever pride parade.
Hundreds of people attended the first ever official pride, held in the country’s capital of Pristina.
There had been unofficial marches in the country previously, in an effort to tackle homophobia and transphobia in the state.
Even the country’s president, Hashim Thaçi, who led the country to independence in 2008, marched in the parade.
He wrote on Twitter: “As President of Republic I joined today hundreds of #LGBTI activists for #KosovoLoveParade. #Kosovo’s constitution protects love! #Pride”
The march, called In The Name of Love, was organised by non-governmental organisations and is intended to become an annual event herein.
As well as hundreds of activists and the country’s president, popstar Dua Lipa, who was born in Kosovo, sent her support.
“Kosovo had its first pride parade today in Prishtina. Love is love,” she said on Twitter.
A 2015 report the National Democratic Institution, a US organisation that promotes democratic institutions, found that gay and transgender people face significant levels of homophobia in the region.
Article 37 of the country’s constitution states that “everyone enjoys the right to marry”.
However, Article 14, which is written into Law on Family, states that “marriage is a legally registered community of two persons of different sexes”.
LGBT activists are working to have Article 14 scrapped so that the European country can finally achieve marriage equality.
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Kosovans took to social media to share videos and pictures of the celebration and protest.
Walking between two main squares in the city, participants chanted “There is no gender in love” as rainbow banners were waved and music was played.