European Region of the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association

Pride event banned in Montenegro

On the eve of the 2015 European IDAHOT Forum celebrations in Montenegro, ILGA-Europe is dismayed to learn that the fundamental rights of the LGBTI community there are being infringed upon.

According to information obtained from our national member organisations, an Academic Walk of Pride originally scheduled for 24 April was banned by the police, without any alternative dates or routes being proposed. The march was deemed ‘too risky’ by the authorities and was rescheduled for 8 May, following complaints by prospective marchers. This march, in turn, was banned with similar explanations offered by the police.

Police protection of people’s fundamental freedoms, such as the right to assemble peacefully, are not one-off privileges, granted to LGBTI advocates and allies as a ‘favour’. This protection should be commonplace.

“Such a move would be upsetting at any time of year.” said ILGA-Europe Executive Director Evelyne Paradis.

“However, the timing of this infringement on fundamental rights is even more distressing given the fact that the eyes of Europe will be turning to Montenegro this weekend in advance of the 2015 IDAHOT Forum. The great advocacy work being carried out at national level, by the LGBTI movement, is being overshadowed.”
ILGA-Europe call on the authorities in Montenegro to provide an alternative safe route without delay.