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Slovakia’s annual LGBTI pride parade has been cancelled until 2016

Slovakia’s annual LGBTI pride parade has been cancelled until 2016

What would have been only the 6th annual Duhovy PRIDE march will not take place this year after organizers cancelled the event.

Duhovy PRIDE has often been targeted by far right extremists and the organizers fear that the climate is not right in the country after opponents of LGBTI rights in Slovakia forced a referendum to try to strengthen the country’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriage.

That referendum failed due to low voter turnout. However the campaign leading up to the vote resulted in a toxic debate around the rights of same-sex couples and gay adoption in Slovakia.

‘We want the PRIDE to be perceived as a peaceful, pleasant and cultural expression of pride, as contrasting to the degradation and putting down that LGBTI constantly experience in their lives,’ organizers said 4 June, according to The Slovak Spectator.

‘Thus, we have decided to express our PRIDE in a different way than by a march through the city. We are involved in several events and campaigns.’

‘Slovakia needs to hear the life stories of LGBTI people, their parents, children, friends and colleagues. Thus, we are going to collect your stories … which we will then be able to bring to all people in Slovakia.’

However organizers are promising that next year’s march will ‘exceed all expectations.’