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Prague Hosts First LGBT Pride March

Prague Hosts First LGBT Pride March

Several thousand people marched in the first LGBT Pride parade in the Czech capital on Saturday as riot police contained antigay protesters assembled to decry the event. The BBC reports on the inaugural Pride march and five-day festival, which took place despite claims from Deputy Chancellor Petr Hajek that Mayor Bohuslav Svoboda should not support “deviant fellow citizens.” Conservative President Vaclav Klaus backed his aide, but 13 countries including the United States issued a statement in support of the celebration.

Several thousand people marched in the first LGBT Pride parade in the Czech capital on Saturday as riot police contained antigay protesters assembled to decry the event.

The BBC reports on the inaugural Pride march and five-day festival, which took place despite claims from Deputy Chancellor Petr Hajek that Mayor Bohuslav Svoboda should not support “deviant fellow citizens.” Conservative President Vaclav Klaus backed his aide, but 13 countries including the United States issued a statement in support of the celebration.

The BBC reports that light drizzle dampened the weather but not the festivities on Saturday. Some 300 police officers worked the scene to prevent the kind of clashes between participants and counter-protesters that occurred at a Pride march in Brno, the second largest city in the Czech Republic, in 2008.

“The march was to culminate in a series of concerts on an island in the Vltava river, as part of a five-day festival comprising some 80 events - concerts, films, seminars, exhibitions and parties - in 30 venues around the capital,” according to the BBC.

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Julie Bolcer