Lithuania Hub

Anti-Gay Demonstrators Protest Lithuanian Pride Parade: Video

LithuaniaLithuania held its second ever gay pride parade today and, like the first one held three years ago, participants were met with anti-gay demonstrators. The protesters attempted to rush a stage that had been set up for pride but police in the capital city of Vilnius were able to keep them at bay.

The Associated Press reports:

They were met by hundreds of unruly protesters, 28 of whom were detained, police said. Among them was Petras Grazulis, an anti-gay lawmaker who rallied protesters with a bullhorn. He was thrown face-down on the ground and carried off in handcuffs by police, though the lawmaker soon reappeared at the protest after being released from police custody.

About 50 protesters tried to storm a concert stage where activists were to speak, but police forced them off. Protesters also threw eggs, hitting Lithuanian lawmaker Giedre Purvaneckiene and Sweden's European Union Affairs Minister Birgitta Ohlsson, who were standing at the front of the parade along with other dignitaries.

"It shows that we need to march until eggs aren't thrown anymore and people can march freely and without fear," said Purvaneckiene, who was not injured.

The parade, dubbed "the March for Equality," is only the second such event for Lithuania, a predominantly Catholic nation of 3 million people that activists say has not done enough to ensure gay, lesbian, and transgender rights.

Large segments of the population in Lithuania, along with other areas of the former Soviet Union, are opposed to the idea of equal rights for gay people.

Last week, an AFP article reported that the country's television broadcaster refused to air clips promoting pride during the day because they felt that the segments would "'promote same sex relationships,' which do not meet the constitutional definition of marriage as a union between man and woman."could be harmful to minors."

Watch video of police effectively push back the mob of anti-gay protesters, AFTER THE JUMP.

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Lithuanian Mayor Crushes Illegally Parked Cars with Tank: VIDEO


Arturas Zuokas, the mayor of Vilnius, Lithuania, has a message for those who park their cars illegally: I will crush you.

The Irish Times reports:

Residents are reportedly tired of luxury car owners parking with impunity and have requested the local council do something about it. In a publicity stunt to reassure the public that the city authorities is addressing the issue, Arturas Zuokas jumped in an army troop carrier and drove over an old Mercedes-Benz S-Class that had been parked in a bus lane.

“I wanted to send a message” Mr Zuokas told the media. “I want to point out that if you have a car and more money it doesn’t mean that you can park it everywhere. Recently there’s been an increase in this type of parking violations, and it shows a lack of respect for others”.


Continue reading "Lithuanian Mayor Crushes Illegally Parked Cars with Tank: VIDEO" »

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Lithuania Holds First Gay Pride Parade


A Lithuanian court this week reversed an earlier decision banning that Catholic-country's first gay pride parade, which took place today with approximately 400 participants. Sadly, it was not without incident.

The Associated Press reports:

Opponents of Lithuania's first gay pride parade threw smoke bombs and tried to break through a barrier Saturday but were stopped by police firing tear gas.

Later, protesters threw rocks and street signs at security forces, and two Lithuanian lawmakers were detained after trying to climb the barrier.

About 400 people took part in the two-hour march — dubbed "For Equality" — in a sealed-off area in downtown Vilnius. Holding large rainbow flags and dancing to music blaring from loudspeakers, they walked along a road near the city's Neris river.

Participants included many foreigners, diplomats and members of the European Parliament.

"We are here because we believe ... in a just society. Labels are for filing, for clothing, not for people. And we are here today to remove labels from people," said Birgitta Ohlsson, Sweden's minister for European Union affairs.

According to the BBC, anti-gay protesters threw stones and even fireworks at the marchers. 19 people have been arrested.

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