11 ambassadors issue statement of support for Sofia Pride

Sofia Pride is an opportunity to promote human rights and tolerance, celebrate diversity,
and denounce homophobia, 11 foreign ambassadors to Bulgaria said in a joint statement in support of the 2014 event, scheduled for July 5.

The annual Sofia Pride parade was postponed from an earlier date out of respect for those who died in the June 2014 floods that hit parts of Bulgaria’s Black Sea coast.

The joint statement said, “We would like to convey our support to all people who either actively participate in or back this year’s Sofia Pride on 5 July 2014.

“Promoting the principle of equal treatment for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people is an important aspect of a tolerant and respectful civil society.”

No one should ever be discriminated against on the grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity, the statement said.

“By signing this statement, we would like to stress that any democratic society should stand up for open-mindedness towards LGBTI people.”

Sofia Pride is an opportunity to promote human rights and tolerance, celebrate diversity,
and denounce homophobia, the ambassadors said.

“The Pride March also increases visibility for the Bulgarian LGBTI people and sends an important memessage to thousands of young gays and lesbians across the country – you are not alone.”

Thanks to increasing legal tolerance towards LGBTI people, countries have passed legalization to allow same sex marriage, have recognized civil unions and partnerships and have safeguarded sexual orientation as a human right in the constitution, the statement said.

In Pride events all across the world, gay and straight people come together for the principle
that all citizens should have the same rights: to live, to love and to work without fear of
discrimination, it said.

“We are yet to achieve this goal – discrimination still exists everywhere.

“Therefore, we would like to encourage Bulgaria to embrace LGBTI people as equal citizens
by joining the Sofia Pride March. We wish everyone a peaceful and happy celebration.”

The signatories are British ambassador Jonathan Allen, Dutch ambassador Tom van Oorschot, Belgian ambassador Anick van Calster, Finnish ambassador Harri Salmi, French ambassador Xavier Lapeyre de Cabanes, Danish ambassador Kaare Janson, Norwegian ambassador Guro Katharina H. Vikør, South African ambassador Vanessa Calvert, German ambassador Matthias Höpfner, Irish ambassador John Biggar and US ambassador Marcie Ries.


(Photo: Patrik Millikin/sxc.hu)



The Sofia Globe staff

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