Fascist Attack on Tbilisi Pride March

The Pride festival, which took place in Tbilisi on July 8th and served as the final event of Pride Week, was disrupted by violent actions carried out by homophobic groups. The incident resulted in the cancellation of the festival. This information was reported by BBC Russian. The attackers managed to infiltrate the vicinity of Lake Lisi, where the festival was supposed to be held, by breaking through police cordons. The festival organizers believe this was a planned operation by the government.

"Love Cannot Be Defeated!" - under this slogan, Pride Week was celebrated in Tbilisi starting from July 1st, and the opening ceremony and conference proceeded without incidents. Among the guests of these events were diplomats and representatives of international organizations.

The festival was meant to be the final event of Pride Week and was planned to be held under heightened security measures and in a closed-off area. The organizers promised the festival attendees music, exhibitions, shows, and a chance to relax in a "non-discriminatory and safe environment." The police, on their part, had declared that they would ensure the security of the event.

Although the festival was held in a non-public area, ultra-conservative groups had already targeted it for disruption. However, negotiations with representatives of the Ministry of Internal Affairs had given the organizers hope until the very end.

A few hours before the festival was set to begin, tensions escalated. Some of the opponents gathered on Vaja-Pshavela Avenue and marched towards the location of the festival. Another group assembled in the vicinity of Lake Lisi. Despite the presence of police forces in the area, the homophobic demonstrators quickly broke through the police cordon. At that time, the organizers and participants of the festival were evacuated in shuttle taxis.

"We had to be evacuated. The Ministry of Internal Affairs failed to ensure the security of the festival," wrote Tbilisi Pride, the organizers of Pride Week, on their Facebook page.

The Lisi Wonderland area, where the festival was scheduled to take place, turned into the scene of another homophobic attack. Those who entered the area damaged the installed structures, equipment, and decorations.

Footage circulated by KIV showed individuals taking cooling beverages from the planned festival bars and tearing apart a rainbow flag.

Tbilisi Pride stated that the police had assured them that the ultranationalist groups would not be allowed to approach the area. However, instead of expelling them from the premises, the police "evacuated" the organizers in prepared transportation.

"This was an organized attack by the Georgian government and Putinist extremist groups against innocent people who sought to exercise their rights guaranteed by democracy, human rights, and the constitution," the organization believes.

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