Skinheads Attack Gay Rights Rally in Bulgaria


Skinheads in the central Bulgaria town of Pazardzhik attacked a group of six activists who had arrived there from Sofia to protest the city council's ban on displays of homosexuality in public, Novinvite reports:

"The (activists) arranged large banners on which they started writing articles from the Bulgarian Constitution and the UN Human Rights Charter. No local gay rights activists joined them, Darik Radio reported.

However, about 100 local young men most of them with shaved heads and in black clothes staged an anti-rally claiming they had gathered to express their support for the order issued by the City Council.

As several of skin heads members attacked the gay rights activists they were immediately knocked down to the ground and arrested by the policemen guarding the rally, who were led personally by the head of the Pazardzhik Police Directorate, Commissar Stoyan Stoyanov. No-one was hurt during the skirmish. However, the anti-rally protestors shouted offensive slogans directed against the gay rights activists such as 'No one wants you, losers', 'Out of Pazardzhik', 'Go to Uganda, freaks'."


  1. JT says

    It looks like a lot of them missed the memo on the whole SKINhead thing.

    But this story to me is surprisingly positive. They acted up and got violent and the police actually did something about it. It’s a lot better than a lot of places. It still sucks that they ban displays of gay and that no gay rights groups did anything.

  2. GregV says

    A “ban on public displays of homosexuality?” How did Bulgaria manage to join the EU in 2007 when its leaders are clearly not insisting on the EU’s standard of basic human rights and free expression?

  3. says

    I’m Bulgarian myself – I wasn’t there, but I know some of the participants, and I’ve been following the events as closely as I can.

    It’s a public secret that the “skinheads” were organized by a certain “nationalist” party (downright nazis of our local variety). Most of them weren’t local, but came specialy from Sofia (the capital) and Plovdiv (one of our biggest cities).

    They were wearing those masks not for cover, but as a symbolic protection against “contamination” with homosexuality, or at least so they said for the media (whoever thought that up doth protest too much). They have no reason to hide; there is no powerful opposition, and getting a criminal record makes them heroes in their own eyes. Well, think of football hooligans.

    I quote the document that caused the scandal, my own translation:
    REGULATION on the public order in Pazardzhik Municipality
    November 2009
    Art. 14. The demonstration and expression of sexual or other orientation in public places is prohibited.

    The Municipal Councillor who proposed that gem of local self-government is so ignorant that he doesn’t know what sexual orientation is (I bet he didn’t know he had one), and no one can define “other orientation”. He made a fool of himself in front of the Commission against Discrimination. The ruling of the Comission on that document is expected any day now.

    It is still a very patriarchal society here (very much secularized by the former communist rulers who were aggressively atheistic). Homosexuality is generally viewed as a mental disorder that is somehow contagious – protect the children! I’m afraid I would be that ignorant too if I didn’t have gay friends.

    You can read the prehistory of the case in more detail in my blog (in English) if you like – just follow the “Pazardzhik case” tag.

Leave A Reply