(WARSAW, Poland) — A big crowd of LGBT rights supporters gathered in Warsaw on Saturday to protest the arrest of a transgender activist who had carried out acts of civil disobedience towards rising homophobia in Poland.
“You’ll not lock all of us up!” individuals chanted on the demonstration that appeared to have drawn hundreds, lots of them younger adults. Most wore masks to battle coronavirus.
Saturday’s protest comes a day after LGBT rights supporters scuffled with police who arrested the activist, Malgorzata Szutowicz, identified greatest as “Margot.” Police stated they detained 48 individuals, whereas activists stated police used tough techniques towards them.
“The police had been aggressively pushing the protesters out of the way in which, knocking individuals to the bottom and holding them down with their boots,” the group stated.
The protests come amid an intensifying standoff in Poland between the LGBT rights motion and the conservative authorities, which has declared it an alien, harmful “ideology.” President Andrzej Duda, who was sworn in for a second time period Thursday, gained re-election on a powerful anti-LGBT platform, and social tensions have been rising.
Szutowicz was put in pre-trial detention for 2 months for acts of civil disobedience, together with utilizing a knife to chop the tires of a van that drives round broadcasting anti-LGBT messages, together with a declare that “homosexuals are making ready society to simply accept pedophilia.”
She belongs to a bunch known as Cease Bzdurom — “Cease the Nonsense” — which has been placing rainbow flags on Warsaw statues, together with one among Jesus, infuriating the conservative authorities.
These defending her say that the authorized measures getting used towards her are disproportionate. Legal professionals haven’t had contact together with her, her protection lawyer stated.
Justice Minister Zbigniew Ziobro defended the police conduct as applicable. He accused opposition politicians who’re defending the LGBT protesters of supporting “banditry.”
“Maybe the knife that was used to destroy the van again then shall be used for an even bigger crime subsequent time,” Ziobro stated. “There will be no license for such a assault … we’ve to agree with this and stand collectively towards criminals.”
Protesters are additional angered as a result of Szutowicz has been put into male detention.
Dunja Mijatovic, the human rights commissioner for the Council of Europe, the continent’s prime human rights physique, known as Saturday for her instant launch.
“Order to detain her for two months sends very chilling sign for #FreedomOfSpeech & #LGBT rights in #Poland,” Mijatovic tweeted.