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Thugs attack launch of Kosovo magazine's gay sex issue

Guests at Kosovo 2.0 magazine's Night of Sex event in Pristina allegedly beaten and sprayed with teargas by anti-gay hooligans
Thugs attacked the launch of a magazine's gay issue in the Balkan city of Pristina, allegedly beating guests and throwing teargas

Thugs attacked the launch of a magazine's gay issue in the Balkan city of Pristina, allegedly beating guests and throwing teargas.

The event on Friday (14 December) to celebrate Kosovo 2.0 magazine's latest issue exploring sex and sexuality was targeted twice by a group of hooligans who eyewitnesses claim were Muslim.

'There were around 20 people, violent, some of them wearing hats on their heads,' a lesbian guest told Aleanca LGBT and Pro LGBT groups.

'They started to hit and loudly offend people, to break lights, tables, and projectors. Everything happened under the eyes of two policemen who tried to protect the participants of the event. One of the policemen got sprayed in the eyes [with teargas] by one of the hooligans.'

However, the organizers reportedly continued the 'Night of Sex' event, which was attended by Lepa Mladjenović, one of the first lesbians in Serbia to publicly come out. With her friend Igballe Rugova, the pair were due to give a presentation on the night.

One attendee is reported as saying that two guest speakers encouraged people to join arms in solidarity against the attackers.

The eyewitness said: 'It was very emotional and motivating, even though we had aggression from some people who came there in the name of God shouting "Allahu Ekber." I am a Muslim myself and I know that what happened was not done in the name of God.

'I met Lepa and Igo and talked with them. It was a very inspiring conversation. I really liked the sincere and faithful friendship they had together, it was one of the most inspiring and beautiful moments for me.'

According to Kosovo News, the magazine had received threats during Thursday and Friday from a group of Muslim extremists called 'Lumpy'.

Aleanca LGBT and Pro LGBT urge Prime Minister Hashim Thaçi to stand up for 'freedom of speech, the right to identity, the right of peaceful assembly and freedom of information.'

In a statement the gay rights groups said: 'We ask to the international community to not remain passive in this situation where medieval, fundamentalist and absurd acts are happening, but to stay closer to the human rights defenders and to support them publicly and actively.'

They added: 'We also call upon the President of Kosovo Mrs Atifete Jahjaga not to forget that she has the duty to stand up as an woman and protect women rights, LGBT rights, and human rights.'

Watch a video of the attack below:

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