Pride in Kharkiv: how was the first LGBT March

In the city centre recorded skirmishes and attacks on LGBT activists

Elizabeth Danilovskaya

Today, 15:55

“A riot, kohai, right vdavis!” – the slogan on 15 September in Kharkiv, the first official LGBT pride parade. According to the organizers, three thousand participants marched through the Central square of the city to draw attention to the rights of sexual minorities. In the crowd were seen traditional families with children, seniors and people with disabilities. They were joined by members of the international organizations, diplomatic missions and consular institutions of foreign States in Ukraine.

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In Kharkov, attacked LGBT people: there was a video

To ensure the protection of public order were involved more than 2,5 thousand police officers and blocked traffic on the main streets. However, two hours after opponents of the pride began to catch the people who took part in the peaceful rally. One of the participants knocked to the ground and kicked, others threw eggs and stones, also the opponents of the March had resisted law enforcement and was to spray tear gas – two policemen were injured. The total of 17 offenders have been arrested and sent to the station.

Прайд в Харькове: как прошел первый ЛГБТ-марш

Police opened two criminal proceedings and made an administrative Protocol.

See also:

In Kharkov during the “equality March” police detained 17 people

Previously, the city already passed a mini-campaign designed to draw attention to the problem of discrimination of sexual minorities in Ukraine. When in the beginning of summer it became known about the first mass peaceful LGBT pride parade, the site of city administration there was a petition to ban the event. The efforts of local human rights defenders and foreign organizations such as Amnesty International, NDI, and the missions of the UN and the OSCE, a peaceful protest was possible.

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“Today” talked to the participants of the pride and find out why it is important to hold such events and how they personally have faced discrimination in Ukraine.

Anna, co-organizer of the pride, a spokeswoman for the LGBT community

“Today we saw the infringement of our rights, when people because of belonging to sexual minorities just turn up and beat feet in the center of the city! No ideology can justify! My coming out to myself happened at a later age, my child was a year old. For me, this challenge was not because I was sure that anyone not doing bad. The next step was to stop hiding their partners, not to say – Yes, it’s just my friend! Do not be silent, when to ask, where are you guys and admit that they do not interest me, but when I did and revealed his truth to others, you are faced with aggression and misunderstanding”.

Artem, co-organizer of the pride, the representative of the LGBT community

“I have long wanted to organize a pride and to make sure that all the participants could in safety pass the route and to Express their civic position. Main idea: show your community, because when people are hiding at home, this does not reduce the risk of being beaten on the street. Today we came to show that we do a lot and we deserve the same rights as all other people. If messing with you because of your orientation, this should be investigated as a crime of hate.

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Note that we do not require anything exclusive, all heterosexual people also have these rights. I remember once I went on vacation and my coworker calls and says: “don’t come back, everything is found out about you and discuss”. I knew about the law is not about discrimination in the workplace, but realized that even if something is proved, then the work is still in this place don’t want. Discrimination still faced and then when me drunk and I asked for protection from the police. Learning that I represent the LGBT community, law enforcement officers immediately said it was because of my orientation. But how drunk would know, if we were not familiar and did not even talk? He just attacked me. Unfortunately, in Ukraine not all guaranteed by law – is implemented”.

Vera, a representative of the LGBT community

“LGBT people have no basic rights that other people have the same right to marriage. So, if you do not hold such pride, then attitudes will not change. Often in my environment, I hear judgmental statements about sexual minorities. When I confess my orientation, often people change their attitude, they can see that I am the same as them, just chose a different path. So I feel more support from others, and those who do not share my position, I just stop any communication.”

Read also, how was in June, March of equality in Kyiv.

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Прайд в Харькове: как прошел первый ЛГБТ-марш

Прайд в Харькове: как прошел первый ЛГБТ-марш

Прайд в Харькове: как прошел первый ЛГБТ-марш

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