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The banning of the Belgrade Pride march

Written declaration No. 492 | Doc. 12750 | 09 February 2012

Mr Jonas GUNNARSSON, Sweden, SOC ; Ms Tina ACKETOFT, Sweden, ALDE ; Mr Mörður ÁRNASON, Iceland, SOC ; Mr Lennart AXELSSON, Sweden, SOC ; Mr Félix BRAZ, Luxembourg, NR ; Mr Piet De BRUYN, Belgium, NR ; Mr James CLAPPISON, United Kingdom, EDG ; Mr Paul FLYNN, United Kingdom, SOC ; Ms Annette GROTH, Germany, UEL ; Ms Carina HÄGG, Sweden, SOC ; Mr Gábor HARANGOZÓ, Hungary, SOC ; Mr Håkon HAUGLI, Norway, SOC ; Mr Dirk Van der MAELEN, Belgium, SOC ; Mr Péter MIHALOVICS, Hungary, EPP/CD ; Ms Carina OHLSSON, Sweden, SOC ; Ms Sandra OSBORNE, United Kingdom, SOC ; Ms Kathryn REILLY, Ireland, UEL ; Ms Marlene RUPPRECHT, Germany, SOC ; Mr Jim SHERIDAN, United Kingdom, SOC ; Mr Christoph STRÄSSER, Germany, SOC ; Mr Björn von SYDOW, Sweden, SOC ; Ms Anette TRETTEBERGSTUEN, Norway, SOC
Written Declaration first published on 5 October 2011 with 21 signatures.

The banning of last Sunday’s Belgrade Pride march by the National Security Council in the face of threats of violence from extremist groups is a grave setback for the cause of democracy, human rights and the rule of law in Serbia.

We call upon the Serbian authorities to take all necessary measures to ensure that the right of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons to freedom of assembly and expression is safeguarded in future; and to ensure that it is those who threaten or practice violence that are penalised, rather than those seeking to exercise their legitimate rights.

We further call upon the Serbian authorities to put in place wide-ranging measures to tackle the high levels of homophobia and transphobia in Serbian society, in accordance with Committee of Ministers Recommendation CM/Rec(2010)5 to member states on measures to combat discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity, and Resolution 1728 (2010) of the Parliamentary Assembly on Discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.