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Bosnian capital holds first Pride parade amid heavy security

More than 1,000 police deployed in Sarajevo where hundreds of participants marched, singing and waving rainbow flags.

Participants march during Bosnia’s first ever LGBT Pride parade in Sarajevo (Darko Bandic/AP)
Participants march during Bosnia’s first ever LGBT Pride parade in Sarajevo (Darko Bandic/AP)

By Associated Press Reporters

Bosnia’s capital, Sarajevo, held its first ever LGBT Pride parade on Sunday, amid heavy security.

Opponents of the event staged a gathering of their own.

Using sniffer dogs and metal barriers, more than 1,000 police deployed along the route where hundreds of participants marched, singing and waving rainbow flags.

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Police guard the route of Bosnia’s first LGBT Pride parade in Sarajevo (Darko Bandic/AP)

About a mile away, dozens of followers of a conservative Islamic group held a rally against the parade.

They described the Pride march as a “sin” and “humiliation” for Sarajevo.

Extremists and hooligans in the past have attacked two LGBT events in Sarajevo, which is predominantly a Muslim city, fuelling fears of violence ahead of this event.

Bosnia remains deeply conservative, and Sarajevo is the last capital in the Balkans to hold a Pride event.

PA

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