Dear PM Brnabić,

EuroPride organisers,

Dear distinguished participants, friends,

  • I am honoured to be here today at the opening of the EuroPride Human Rights Conference. Europride is about universally recognised human rights for all, including freedom of speech and freedom of assembly, about equality and about fighting discriminations that LGBTIQ+ persons face all over the world and are often exposed to violence and hatred for no reason other than their sex, sexuality or gender.
  • The Europride is the voice of thse deprived of their rights and an call for these rights and their dignity to be upheld.
  • This is the first time that Europride is taking place in South East Europe and Belgrade and Serbia are the first hosts in the region, showcasing progress and vision Serbia showed three years ago, when interest was expressed to organise it.
  • Against this background, let me today share with you our profound disappointment that the MoI issued a ban of the parade, which is planned to conclude the Pride week.
  • Belgrade has been a good and safe host of the parade in the past several years and had been showing a welcoming face and reputation to many participants, offering safe space to the voices of the LGBTIQ+.
  • The events of the last several weeks prove that this community still faces global challenges.
  • The march is the public expression of the will to overcome long-standing challenges, it is the most visible part of the week and there cannot be Europride without a march.
  • As the organisers announced their decision to explore legal remedies against the ban, allow me to express hope that solution will be found for the march to be held in peace, security and safety.
  • The European Union is founded on indivisible, universal values of human dignity, freedom, equality and solidarity; it is based on the principles of democracy and the rule of law and it places the individual at the heart of its activities. These are values shared throughout our EU family and those aspiring to be part of it.
  • Allow me to conclude by reminding us all that to be able to breath, sleep, eat is the same as to be able to live and love freely.
  • I would once again welcome you all to Belgrade, to Serbia and to this conference of the EuroPride week, wishing everyone fruitful time and joint work on protection of human rights and dignity because this is what we are here today and what we will all remain advocating for.