News by email Donate


Top Stories

Most Read

Popular Videos

serbian orthodox church anti pride parade.JPG
REUTERS/Zorana Jevtic
serbian orthodox church anti pride parade.JPG
REUTERS/Zorana Jevtic
World News

Serbian Orthodox Church leads protest against planned gay Pride event

by Reuters Journalist

Thousands Christian opponents of a European gay Pride event to be hosted by Belgrade protested through the Serbian capital on Sunday, even though the government has said it would scrap or delay the Pride event.

Belgrade is due to host the EuroPride march on 17th September, an event staged in a different European city each year. But President Aleksandar Vucic said on Saturday it would be cancelled or postponed, citing reasons such as threats from right-wing activists.

Sunday's protest against the EuroPride event, held during a procession to mark a religious holiday, was led by clergy from the Serbian Orthodox Church, some of whose bishops say the Pride event threatens traditional family values and should be banned.

"Save our children and family," read one of the banners held up by protesters on Sunday, some of whom also carried crosses.

Others who joined Sunday's march chanted slogans in support of far-right or nationalist causes.

Some waved Russian flags, a show of support for Moscow, Serbia's traditional ally, as the Belgrade government tries to balance its ambition to join the European Union with its longstanding ties with Russia and China.

The president said on Saturday EuroPride would be scrapped or held later for safety reasons. Alongside threats from what he said were right-wing "hooligans", he cited issues such as an ongoing dispute with Kosovo and the energy crisis.

"It will happen but in some other and happier time," he said of the EuroPride event.

A UN representative in Serbia criticised Belgrade's ban on EuroPride. "It would go against Serbia's international human rights commitments," Francoise Jacob, the UN resident coordinator in Serbia, said in a statement.

Previous Serbian governments have banned Pride parades in the past, drawing criticism from human rights groups and others. Some Pride marches in the early 2000s also met with fierce opposition and were marred by violence.

But recent Pride marches in Serbia have passed off peacefully, a change cited by EuroPride organisers as one reason why Belgrade was chosen as the 2022 host. Copenhagen was the host in 2021.

Serbia is a candidate to join the EU. But to become a member, it must first meet demands to improve the rule of law and its human and minority rights record, and must root out organised crime and corruption and mend ties with Kosovo.

A Monthly Gift Of $11 Makes A World Of Difference

In a world of fake news there’s never been a greater need for quality Christian journalism. Premier’s mission is to provide the Church with the most up to date and relevant news, told from a Christian perspective. But we can’t do it without you.

Unlike many websites we haven't put up a paywall — we want to keep our journalism free at the point of need and as open as we can. Premier’s news output takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. No one in the USA is sharing news like we are across radio, magazines and online so please help us to continue that today.

For a monthly gift of $11 or more we’d also be able to send you a free copy of the brand new Premier Bible, a wonderful Anglicised version of the NLT packed with exclusive bonus content, reading plan and resources to help you get the most out of scripture.

Your monthly support will make a world of difference. Thank you.

Support Us
Continue the conversation on our Facebook page

Related Articles

Sign up to our newsletter to stay informed with news from a Christian perspective.

News by email