Several dozen people have marched in the Georgian capital to mark International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia (IDAHOTB), despite fears of potential clashes with opponents.
One of the LGBT demonstrations took place near the prime minister’s office, where several people held signs and chanted against homophobia.
As LGBT supporters rallied, other Georgians marched in support of the church’s call for a rally on the “day of sanctity and strength of the family.”
Neo-Nazis gathered in Tbilisi on May 17 to oppose International Day Against Homophobia,Transphobia, And Biphobia, several minor clashes were observed by local media, but no major incidents were reported.
The police interfered only after the march of Georgian Power, an overtly neo-Nazi bunch of teenagers, went sour, attacking Turkish cafes and restaurants and passers in Muslim apparel. Some other radical nationalistic and neo-Nazi groups, including Dinamo Tbilisi Ultras, radicalized football fans, attended the demonstration as well. They gathered at the Metro Station Rustaveli and marched down to Aghmashenebeli Avenue, a place of many oriental cafes.
The demonstrators, some of them wearing masks, damaged several Turkish cafes yelling ‘Glory to the nation, death to the enemy.’ There were small fights brewing with owners of the Turkish restaurants as well, however, only after attacks became harsh, and they tore veils off at least one Muslim woman, the police started detentions.
“Participants of the demonstration were particularly aggressive. They insulted citizens and damaged trading properties and cafes, and damaged restaurant banners and signboards,” – a statement published by the Interior Ministry
A total of 11demonsrators were arrested.
Georgia is ranked as the world’s third-most homophobic country in the World Value Survey, with some 93 percent of Georgians saying they would be against the idea of having a gay neighbor.
By Shawn Wayne
Photo by RFE/RL
18 May 2018 12:22