Support for “Hate-Free Zone” from the European Parliament’s Intergroup on LGBT Rights

Support for organizers of “Hate-Free Zone” and congratulations regarding Pride Day from the European Parliament’s Intergroup on LGBT Rights

LGBT-intergroup-EU-parliament“Dear Organising Committee, Dear friends in Belgrade,

We are truly sorry we are unable to be with you for the celebration of this year’s Pride Day on June 27th. Together with over 170 other Members of the European Parliament, we send you our strongest message of support for this important event.

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in Belgrade and in the whole of Serbia are entitled to the full set of human rights foreseen by international law: the right to life; the right to freedom of expression and assembly; the right to a private and family life, to equality before the law, and to freedom from discrimination.

We were shocked by the last-minute ban on the Belgrade Pride in September 2013. We are equally highly concerned by the violence Serbian LGBTI people still face. Both show an effort to render LGBTI people invisible and violate the right to dignity, the right to life and the right to freedom of expression. In our resolution of 16 January 2014, we called on Serbian authorities to address violence against LGBTI persons, guarantee freedom of assembly for all its citizens and give political support to the human rights of LGBTI people.

The cornerstone for all human rights activism is that human rights are universal and indivisible. You embrace the full extent of human rights by dedicating your event to the Roma people. This solidarity among minorities is praiseworthy: we should never forget that negotiating one group of people’s human rights away opens the door to negotiating away everyone’s rights. All human rights defenders should be aware of this, and strive together for the full respect of human rights.

Be assured of our support for your event. We wish you a safe and empowering Pride Day.

Yours in solidarity,
Sophie in ‘t Veld MEP
Tanja Fajon MEP”