This article was published on August 31st, 2022
According to the president, Serbia will not let a pan-European LGBTQ+ Pride celebration happen in Belgrade next week due to threats from right-wing extremists and concerns about violence.
Aleksandar Vui, the president of Serbia, declared his decision to suspend the EuroPride festival on September 12–18th during a press conference when he also suggested increasing the term of Serbia’s lesbian prime minister.
Several Factors Involved in Decision to Call Off EuroPride
Almost three years ago, representatives of the European Pride Organisers Association (EPOA) decided to hold the annual celebration in Serbia’s metropolis. The officials of the Balkan nation did not believe they could manage EuroPride, which included a Pride march, according to Vui, who cited the situation with neighboring Kosovo and several economic issues as factors.
“This is a breach of minority rights, but the government is currently under fire from many issues,” he added.
The coordinators of EuroPride said that Serbian officials must offer protection from “bullies” who endanger the march and try to tarnish it. The Serbian prime minister, Ana Brnabi, was pushed to keep her pledge to sponsor the meeting by the president of the EPOA, Kristne Garina.
The president added, “President Vui cannot call off someone else’s function.” The European Court of Human Rights declared that the freedom to practice Pride is a fundamental human right. While extreme right-wing followers have been more outspoken and have insulted and occasionally assaulted persons for their sexual orientation or gender identity, Serbia has vowed to preserve LGBTQ+ rights as it applies to joining the EU.
Brnabi Under Scrutiny
Brnabi was elected as Serbia’s prime minister for the first time in 2017, which was viewed as a significant development for a primarily conservative and male-dominated nation. Brnabi, who lives with a female partner, has been under fire from LGBTQ+ organizations for not doing more to advance the status of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people in Serbian culture.
Following altercations at the 2010 Pride march in Belgrade, future marches had heavy police security. As the news in Serbia continues to unfold, HomoCulture will keep our international readers and travelers up to date on the latest.