New Cold War.org, June 8, 2016
Three news articles are enclosed.
Ukraine LGBTI activists are determined that June 12 March for Equality go ahead despite threats
By Joe Morgan, Gay Star News (UK), June 1, 2016
Neo-Nazis in Ukraine have warned gay people there will be a ‘bloodbath’ if they dare to hold a Pride march on June 12. The thugs, who are backed by the Ukraine Orthodox Church, have a long history of disrupting and attacking LGBTI people and events.
Just in March this year, a LGBTI rights conference in Lviv was shut down after a homophobic mob attacked the Hotel Dnister with rocks and fireworks. Police were forced to try to step in and stop the event. Even though the authorities were involved, there was not a single person arrested for violence.
‘Today, we are forced to accept LGBT marches and festivals, and thus join the ranks of sinners and those who cover them. Who is going to be equated on this Sabbath?’ read a statement released by Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists. ‘Immoral freaks, clowns and degenerates will be equated with those who have honor and dignity, respect and love for their neighbor, soldiers who gave their lives and health protecting peace in the country?’
Writing on Facebook, Artem Skoropadsky, the spokesperson for the Right Sector nationalist movement, posted: ‘Our colleagues from the OUN movement have released a strong statement about the gay parade in Kiev. In short, on June 12, there will be a bloodbath in Kiev. The organizers of the march still have time not to hold the march.’
Pride organizers are determined for the march to go on. Olena Semenova, of the Kyiv Pride committee, said: ‘Pride is a public event. This is our open dialogue with those in power. This is also our dialogue with society. People have to see who we are really, why we think that our citizen rights are being violated, and what we want. We should not be ashamed of diversity. We will remind this again and again every year’.
The March for Equality remains scheduled to take place on 12 June.
Kyiv police vow to protect June 12 gay pride parade from radicals
KYIV – Police in Kyiv are set to ensure safety during a LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) parade (the March of Equality) due on June 12, Kyiv National Police chief Andriy Kryshchenko said.
During the parade, Kyiv must demonstrate its ability to provide safety, especially in light of the upcoming Eurovision 2017, Kryshchenko said in an interview with the 112 Ukraine television channel.
“The LGBT parade. There was an application, it will be held. We are seriously determined to provide safety. No matter who says what about this parade, there is the national interest and we must show that our society is tolerant and ready to take its values into Europe. Kyiv is hosting the next Eurovision and we must show that we are capable of providing safety.
“This is not about the parade proper, this is about people having the right to speak their minds. Because it [the parade] is not only ‘about this’, it is also about the opportunity to freely express your thoughts, which is what we were all fighting for two years ago,” Kryshchenko said.
Serious security measures will be in place, he said. The police have already met with all participants of the planned parade, as well as their opponents, the police chief said.
“We met both with the organizers and with their opponents who represent radical youth organizations. We explained to everyone what we are going to do. Last year, a law enforcement officer was injured very severely at a similar event. He sustained serious injuries and it was a miracle that his life was saved. This year, the police will act within the law, but in a very tough way,” the city police chief said.
The police are also checking Internet posts, especially those which threaten LGBT parade participants, Kryshchenko said.
According to the kyivpride.org website, the fifth international LGBT forum, KyivPride2016, which includes about 20 training sessions and discussion panels, will be held in the Ukrainian capital on June 6-13. The March of Equality on June 12 is a peaceful procession in support of the ideas of personal and public safety, individual rights and non-discrimination.
A number of public organizations have already expressed their intention to disrupt the event.
Some policemen don’t want to guard LGBTI pride parade in Kyiv
Ukraine’s Interior Ministry says that some police officers don’t want to join patrols that will protect the LGBTI pride parade in Kyiv on June 12, according to the Vesti news portal.
The pride parade in Kyiv is scheduled for June 12 with 6,500 police officers to be tapped to ensure law and order.
“Police will do their job to ensure public order. All statements are personal attitude by certain citizens, certain policemen. We’re interested in reducing acts of provocation,” advisor to the Interior Minister Ivan Varchenko said, according to Vesti. Kyiv police’s press service also commented on the situation. “Three persons are not the whole police,” deputy head of the press service Iryna Levchenko said.
The Ukrainian ATO Veterans Union posted a statement on Facebook on Tuesday that National Police officers would not protect participants in the LGBTI pride parade in Kyiv. “We refuse to carry out criminal orders from senior officers to beat patriots [meaning radicals in general and Right Sector in particular] who will act against the pride parade,” the statement says.
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