The Montenegrin city of Nikšic has had its Pride march banned for the third time this year.
The Pride event was cancelled, and authorities cited security threats.
Football hooligans and nationalists had threatened to disrupt the event, and the Orthodox Church had mobilised against it.
Despite the security threats excuse for banning pride, others have taken place in the capital city, Podgorica, and Budva, both of which were protected by police.
Ulrike Lunacek MEP, Co-President of the Intergroup on LGBTI Rights, reacted: “It is completely unacceptable that the police, for the third time already, bans Nikšic pride. Montenegrin authorities have demonstrated their capacity to protect Pride marches, and are perfectly capable of doing the same in Nikšic.”
“Montenegrin institutions are simply not doing their job. This is a lost opportunity to send a strong positive message about Montenegrin leaders’ commitment to fundamental rights.”
Tanja Fajon MEP, Vice-President of the LGBTI Intergroup, continued: “From all accession countries, Montenegro has developed the most extensive body of law and policy, aiming to protect LGBTI people from violence and discrimination.”
“However, these words are worthless, if in practice police is either incapable or unwilling to protect LGBTI people´s right to freedom of assembly. This should play a large role in the accession negotiations, and I hope the Commission will take this up in its upcoming accession report.”
The European Commission will present its accession report mid-October.
by Joseph Patrick McCormick
Source – PinkNews