Baltic Pride Parade Might Take Place In City Centre
As the online news portal Lithuania Tribute reports, the municipality of Vilnius and the organizers of Baltic Pride 2013, the Lithuanian Gay League (LGL), have to negotiate the location of the march again. The Regional Administrative Court nullified the municipality's decission to relocate the rally from central Gedimino Avenue to the more remote Upés street.
Vilnius' authorities had refused to give their permit to demonstrate for equality in the city centre due to security issues. The LGL appealed against this decission noting that they want to show that members of the LGBT-community are part of Lithuanian society and the urban image of Vilnius. Moreover, the police of Vilnius stated they could handle the rally in Gedimino Avenue, although it would be more convenient for them if it was transfered to Upés street. Since this statement doesn't count as an endorsement of the municipality's point of view, the ban to take the original route was declared illegitimate.
The first Baltic Pride event in Vilnius was organized in 2010. Initially prohibited, the Supreme Administrative Court ultimately allowed its realization. Nevertheless, the Lithuanian LGBT community still has to struggle for acceptance. In March, a survey among 1,000 Lithuanians revealed that over 60% of the interviewed persons objected to the rally. Only about 15% uttered their support.
This year's Baltic Pride parade is set to take place on the 27th of July, shortly after Lithuania's acceptance of the EU Council Presidency.