LGBTI equality and human rights in Europe and Central Asia

ILGA-Europe welcomes final judgment of Lithuanian court to allow Baltic Pride March on Vilnius central avenue

Today the Supreme Administrative Court in Lithuania ruled once again that the Baltic Pride March for Equality can take place on 27 July on the mains city’s avenue.

The organisers of the March applied for this location months ago but the Vilnius City repeatedly denied them a permission to host March for Equality in that location and appealed all previous court decision in favour of the organisers.

Today’s judgement is final and cannot be appealed.

Evelyne Paradis, Executive Director of ILGA-Europe’s said:

“We warmly welcome today’s ruling, which is not only just but the only possible verdict in any country committed to human rights. We regret that the Mayor of Vilnius has continuously denied permission for this event to take place on the main city’s avenue and that he chose to challenge all court judgements issued in favour of the organisers of the Baltic Pride.

Once again we applaud the Lithuanian justice system, Lithuanian and all Baltic activists for this important human rights victory.

As Lithuania currently hosts the EU Presidency and thus is a public face of the European Union, we expect from Lithuanian authorities nothing less than an exemplary action ensuring respect and observation of human rights and fundamental EU principles: the marchers must be protected and their safety ensured.”

According to our Rainbow Europe’s Index (May 2013), Lithuania came 31st among 49 European countries in terms of laws and policies affecting the human rights of LGBTI people.