Police strikes and religious rhetoric cannot crush Serbian Pride

Pride Parade BelgradeWith the democratic rights of Serbia’s LGBT community effectively held to ransom by Belgrade’s police force, the fate of the controversial Pride Parade hangs in the balance once more.

The Serbian state, Orthodox Church and extremists have successfully crushed the Pride Parade in recent years.

The authorities could have been handed the justification to pull the plug on Sunday’s parade, too, thanks to opportunely-timed strike action being threatened by Belgrade police unions.

While police claim they will step in to protect the city if called upon, they have presented a perfect excuse for authorities that have previously used security issues to ban the gathering. Whether they choose to use their power to block the parade remains to be seen.

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Gay hate jeopardised film about Serbia’s ‘lost’ generation

24 September, 2014 Culture, News 1 comment

StevanFilipovic-2A film about the failings of Serbia’s education system for the country’s so-called ‘lost’ generation was nearly halted by homophobia among its young Belgrade cast, provocative director Stevan Filipović said.

The prominent Serbian director is no stranger to controversy, having received death threats and faced reprisals after the high-profile release of Skinning (Šišanje), his notorious portrayal of the rising threat of neo Nazis in Belgrade.

Even that could not prepare him for the prejudice and ignorance when casting a young gay role in his new film, Next to Me (Pored mene)

“Living in Serbia, I did expect problems with the teen gay roles in Next to Me, but nothing could have prepared me for what was in store,’ he told Wild Rooster.

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