Bulgaria: ‘Sofia Pride Parade 2018’ to take place during the EU Council Presidency

Written by on January 22, 2018 in Bulgaria - Comments Off on Bulgaria: ‘Sofia Pride Parade 2018’ to take place during the EU Council Presidency

The Sofia Pride Parade 2018 will take place on Saturday, June 9. This date was just announced by the organising committee for the event.

During the protest, the participants will once again demand equal rights for all, including the members of the Bulgarian LGBTI community. This year’s motto will be “Different People, Equal rights”.

More participants, maybe 5,000 of them, after 3,000 had taken part in 2017, might be joining this year. Also, the organisers believe Bulgaria’s EU Council Presidency might force the Bulgarian government to take a stand.

So far, no Bulgarian government officials have ever shown support, while the ambassadors of the United States, Israel and numerous Western European countries have. Should the Sofia government ignore the Pride Parade this year, as it always has, this could be rather embarrassing for Bulgaria during the EU Presidency, the organisers believe.

They might be right, since Europe and the world are looking at Bulgaria far more intensively right now. Not only will the alarming ignorance and homophobia demonstrated in the country be carried into the world’s reputable news media more than ever. But EU officials visiting Bulgaria might notice something is very wrong, should the government stick to its usual ignorance.

Since the Bulgarian government includes members of the radical right as well, who are known for their hostility against minorities, including lesbians, gays, trans-gender and intersex people, there is generally not much hope things will change anytime soon.

On the other hand Prime Minister Boyko Borissov and Sofia’s Mayor Yordanka Fandakova, are not radical, but part of the centre-right GERB party. They will most likely be asked to join the parade.

As always, the Sofia Pride Parade will be preceded by cultural events, including a film fest with movies having to do with homosexuality, tolerance and other subjects.

In the early years, participants of the Sofia Pride have been attacked by a homophobic mob in the streets of the Bulgarian capital. But recently, the police have protected the event successfully.

The Sofia Pride Parade event on Facebook can be accessed here.

This is The Sofia Globe’s video report about last year’s Sofia Pride Parade:

 

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