Sofia Pride 2013 to be held on September 21
The 2013 Sofia Pride parade, postponed from June, is to be held on September 21.
The annual procession, in support for equality for LGBT people, will start from Independence Square in the Bulgarian capital city at 3pm.
The parade was postponed from its original June date because it coincided with huge anti-government protests and on that day, in particular the Party of European Socialists congress in Sofia, which was targeted by protesters demanding the resignation of the Bulgarian Socialist Party government.
Organisers said that an issue being highlighted at the September 21 event was to demand justice for Mihail Stoyanov, a 26-year-old medical student who was murdered in Borisova Gradina in 2008 in a homophobic assault.
The parade also will express rejection of undemocratic laws such as Russia’s recently-adopted law against “homosexual propaganda”.
“These laws not only violate fundamental human rights and freedoms and fundamental democratic principles, but are imposed on the basis of slander and false stereotypes of homo-and bisexuality and definitions of these communities,” Monica Pisankaneva , a member of the organising committee, said.
Sofia Pride was first held in 2008. Ahead of the June date, a statement by a large number of foreign ambassadors expressed support for the parade, while – in another ritual that has become associated with the annual event – the Bulgarian Orthodox Church called for the cancellation of the parade.
(Photo: Patrik Millikin/sxc.hu)