LGBT+ advocates hold counter-protest as anti-LGBT+ group burn rainbow flag at Warsaw rally

Anti-LGBT+ sentiment has gripped the nation following the re-election of Duda, seeping far-right ideologies into everyday society in Poland.

LGBT+ protest Warsaw Poland Pro LGBT+ protesters gesture in a stand-off with nationalists in Warsaw.
Image: Reuters/K. Pempel

The hundreds of anti-LGBT+ protesters in Warsaw, Poland on Sunday were met by a wall of LGBT+ advocates who painted a rainbow on the street ahead of the planned protest.

The nationalist anti-LGBT+ protestors attempted to burn flame-resistant rainbow flags, demanding the ban of Pride parades.

Amongst the attendees of the Warsaw anti-LGBT+ rally was far-right MP Krzysztof Bosak.

Bosak was the Confederation’s candidate in the presidential election and won 6.8% of the vote in the first round.

Addressing the crowd, the far-right politician promised to reject LGBT+ ideology:

“Expressing open opposition to the cultural revolution that the extreme left wants to carry out is our moral duty and the only means to stop it.

“We must be active, we must stop this revolution… let us not allow this minority to impose political correctness.”

A line of police officers divided the two protests with the pro LGBT+ rally convening directly opposite the far-right groups.

They chanted slogans and painted a giant rainbow along the street in front of Warsaw University.

The Campaign Against Homophobia wrote: “Where they plan to shout slogans of hate, a symbol of the fight for freedom, equality, love and democracy is waiting!”

The rise in homophobic discourse in Poland has resulted in over a third of the country declaring itself an ‘LGBT+ free zone’.

This rhetoric is echoed by President Duda whos right-wing party, Law and Justice (PiS), has been chipping away at LGBT+ rights since they came into power.

In July, Duda was re-elected following a close presidential race against liberal politician Rafał Trzaskowski. He won by 51.2% of the vote in contrast to his opponent receiving 48.8%.

Duda’s campaign for re-election was founded upon deeply discriminatory policies which will strip LGBT+ people of their rights within Poland. During his presidential race, he labelled LGBT+ identities as an “ideology” more dangerous than communism as well as signing in a declaration barring same-sex marriage and disallowing LGBT+ people to adopt children.

Following his reelection, many LGBT+ people in Poland have been left fearing for their safety and forced to leave the country.

© 2020 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

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