Hate & Pride in Manchester
Earlier this week Human Rights Watch reported that hundreds of gay men have been murdered in Iraq since 2004, and that the attacks appear to be organised.
Across Eastern Europe gay people are increasingly out and proud but are facing enormous intimidation and even violence for being so. Pride marches have been banned in Latvia and Russia among other places, and there are attempts to bring in ‘Clause 28’-type legislation which discriminates against gay people in Poland and Lithuania. Gay people have suffered violence and even death threats in Kosovo and Serbia.
Iraq and these Eastern European countries, while different in many ways, are all places coming to terms with the recent fall of authoritarian governments. The gay communities hope that new freedoms will apply to them too, but there are clearly others who feel threatened by the very visibility of gay people.
On Monday night, as part of Manchester Pride, Amnesty will host a special panel discussion at a hotel in the city centre to discuss the prejudice and discrimination faced by gay people in Eastern Europe, and how activists there and their supporters here are fighting back. Our panel will include activists from Lithuania and Latvia, as well as local basketball legend John Amaechi and local MP Tony Lloyd. We hope the evening will be a lively discussion of what people in Manchester and across the UK can do to support gay rights activists in Eastern Europe.
The event is free, but to be sure to get in you might want to reserve a place here.
Our blogs are written by Amnesty International staff, volunteers and other interested individuals, to encourage debate around human rights issues. They do not necessarily represent the views of Amnesty International.