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Anti-Gay Rioters Injure 100 At Serbian Pride Parade

Belgrade
A day after a very sizable anti-gay march in Serbia's capital, a large amount of fighting and looting took place during today's pride parade in Belgrade, the first one held in that country since 2001. Hundreds of hateful right-wing protesters attacked and injured at least 100 people, including many of the 5,000 thousand police officers who were present to protect the pro-gay activists.

The AP has a rundown of the insensible violence:

Belgrade2 Several parked cars were set on fire or damaged, shop windows were broken, garbage containers were overturned and streets signs destroyed. Several shops were looted. The rioters fired shots and hurled petrol bombs at the headquarters of the ruling pro-Western Democratic Party, setting the garage of the building on fire. The state TV building and other political parties headquarters were also attacked, with many of the house windows shattered by stones. The protesters, chanting "death to homosexuals!" hurled Molotov cocktails, bricks, stones, glass bottles and firecrackers at riot police. Police responded by firing tear gas and deploying armored vehicles to disperse the charging protesters in the heart of the capital even after the brief pride march ended.

The protesters hijacked a bus, ordered all of its passengers and the driver out, and pushed it down a steep street before it hit an electric pole on a main Belgrade square. An organizer, Lazar Pavlovic, said that staging of the pride march was a "historic event." He condemned the violence and noted that the incidents and immense security measures illustrate the dangers the gay people in Serbia are facing.

Reportedly, the violent protesters caused a total of $1.3 million in damage.

Reactions from Belgrade officials:

Serbian President Boris Tadic: "Serbia will guarantee human rights for all its citizens, regardless of the differences among them, and no attempts to revoke these freedoms with violence will be allowed."

Defense Minister Dragan Sutanovac: “It is clear now that this (violence) has nothing to do with the Pride Parade, but represents hatred unseen for quite some time."

Hillary Clinton is due to stop in Belgrade later this week during a visit to the Balkans.

Watch several videos of the pride march (Belgrade's second ever) and of the police combatting protesters, AFTER THE JUMP.

 

 

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Comments

  1. The Parade wasn't attacked, just the police. It was well cordoned off and other security arrangements meant the parade participants were safe coming and going too. It wasn't disrupted but central Belgrade was a mess.

    See UK Gay News on-the-scene report http://www.ukgaynews.org.uk/Archive/10/Oct/1004.htm

    Posted by: paul canning | Oct 10, 2010 12:26:58 PM


  2. Also. The anti-gay forces used all kinds of tactics - including pretending to be gay activists and claiming the parade was called off because of Hillary Clinton's visit. This fooled some people for about three hours.

    Posted by: paul canning | Oct 10, 2010 12:28:34 PM


  3. There's nothing that proves the sanity of your position more than setting things on fire and hijacking, then crashing, a bus.

    Posted by: bobbyjoe | Oct 10, 2010 12:34:15 PM


  4. Hmmm, wonder if the massive police presence had anything to do with EU accession or Hillary's visit?

    Accession won't be happening for at least a decade now. And it would be great if Hillary canceled the visit, or at least gave a stern reprimand.

    Posted by: Paul R | Oct 10, 2010 12:51:27 PM


  5. The riots look like a repeat of the 2008 Beograd riots against Kosovo independence. It's mostly political, against the western-oriented government.

    As a friend of mine put it, "9 years ago people from pride filled the emergency rooms, now they're full of policemen. Probably this is a sign of progress!"

    Posted by: Kevinvt | Oct 10, 2010 12:53:43 PM


  6. I dont think Hilary should reprimand Serbia -- because the government (whatever their motives) really did go out of the way to protect us. Hilary should praise Serbia for its position, but discuss the need to combat hooliganism. The fact that no paraders were injured is a blessing -- and it couldnt have happened without the government and police.

    Posted by: Marko | Oct 10, 2010 12:57:26 PM


  7. Anyone know how many people were arrested and charged??

    Posted by: JC | Oct 10, 2010 1:00:07 PM


  8. "Police said they had detained 101 people as of late afternoon and kept 53 in custody"

    Posted by: Kevinvt | Oct 10, 2010 1:13:37 PM


  9. I wonder if Matt Barber and Peter LaBarbera are privately clucking in glee, wishing this could happen in America.

    Posted by: what is wrong with serbia | Oct 10, 2010 1:45:20 PM


  10. Even if there was violence, it is good to hear the Serbian government coming out strongly against the rioters and in favor of lgbt rights

    Posted by: ravewulf | Oct 10, 2010 2:01:48 PM


  11. "Right-wing groups say the gay events are contrary to Serbian family and religious values." Have to wonder about a religion where riots and violence are good and love is bad. With looting it sounds like they just found a convenient way to get that new flat screen they always wanted.

    Posted by: Craig | Oct 10, 2010 2:47:39 PM


  12. God damn I'll be happy when we starting bashing back. Only then will shit like this stop.

    Posted by: Cory | Oct 10, 2010 2:54:25 PM


  13. ah, this from the land that gave us the spark that set europe ablaze in the first world war, and europe's most recent spate at ethnic cleansing. a remarkable people, really.

    as konrad adenauer would say (while dismissively waving): "asien, asien."

    Posted by: architectinberlin | Oct 10, 2010 3:52:14 PM


  14. "I wonder if Matt Barber and Peter LaBarbera are privately clucking in glee, wishing this could happen in America."
    Posted by: what is wrong with serbia | Oct 10, 2010 1:45:20 PM

    ... precisely my thought as I was into the third para of this post. Just how many of the vile wingnut homophobes, whom we suffer in the United States and elsewhere globally, are watching this in Serbia and jealously thinking "if only...".

    Posted by: david026257 | Oct 10, 2010 4:21:51 PM


  15. Oh please, Berlin Architect! Your good kaiser had to give a blank cheque to the Haplessburg Dynasty, whilst the Brits rubbed their hands in glee, looking for their excuse to enter a war that couldn't possibly concern them, except to retard Germany.

    And you blame this on a teenage Serb? And then you wonder why it's your esteemed privilege to bail out wayward Mediterranean lands? Learn some revisionist history and how the Game of Nations is really played.

    Posted by: Zeljko | Oct 10, 2010 5:00:58 PM


  16. God bless Serbian President Tadic for standing up for the right of gays to march and for protecting the marchers, at no small cost.

    If only Russia's government would do that...

    Posted by: hephaestion | Oct 10, 2010 8:15:59 PM


  17. These are the scions of the butchers who went to town on the people of Kossovo and Bosnia-Herzegovina...what can be expected from ignorant, religious, skin heads and their ilk!

    Posted by: Arturo Beeche | Oct 11, 2010 12:28:56 AM


  18. What exactly should Hillary Clinton reprimand? The Serbian government should be highly praised for ensuring the safety of the participants and working with the organizers at every step to enable this to happen. Open your eyes to what the world is really like - pride parades do not and cannot happen in the vast majority of countries, including many in Europe (i.e. Eastern Europe). Serbia is actually ahead of the curve in many ways. As horrible as the situation is for gays in Serbia, at least they are seeing the beginning of progress. Some people seem to have no perspective and are completely unable to see any hope or signs of progress. Perhaps we should just bomb Serbia (or whatever impoverished fledgling democracy) into becoming some sort of model society?

    Posted by: Vlad | Oct 11, 2010 1:06:13 AM


  19. @Zeljko

    I'll just stick to quoting Otto von Bismarck:

    "One day the great European War will come out of some damned foolish thing in the Balkans".

    As for playing the Game of Nations... I think Germany is doing just a *bit* better than her neighbors these days.

    Posted by: architectinberlin | Oct 11, 2010 4:16:30 AM


  20. Makes you wonder what the rioters fear -- their own temptations, perhaps?

    Posted by: wimsy | Oct 11, 2010 10:20:26 AM


  21. Shame on the those foolish Serbs.
    Onward,
    Joe Mustich, Justice of the Peace,
    Red Studio Farm, Washington, CT, USA

    Posted by: Joe Mustich, JP | Oct 11, 2010 7:14:00 PM


  22. Hey BerlinerArchitect:

    Germany is still a whipped dog.

    Posted by: FRANK | Oct 15, 2010 2:01:37 AM


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