The 2009 Budapest Pride march. (Pic:UK Gay News)
A court in Hungary has overturned a police ban on a gay Pride march that is set to take place in Budapest in June.
Police last week denied an application by the organisers, Rainbow Mission Foundation, to hold the event after the activists applied to extend the march to the parliament building.
The authorities said that the march would hinder the flow of traffic.
The Metropolitan Court of Budapest refuted claims that the extended route would unduly obstruct traffic and ordered the Budapest police to approve the application.
“The court’s decision was a victory not only for the community of lesbians, gays, bisexual and transgender people, but for the right of all Hungarians to freedom of assembly,” said Boris Dittrich, acting director of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights program at the New York-based Human Rights Watch.
In 2007, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that LGBTI people are entitled to the right to peaceful assembly and expression and that the state and police have an obligation to protect LGBTI public events from violent attacks.
“Instead of trying to obstruct the fundamental rights to freedom of assembly and expression, the police authorities should fulfil their obligation to protect the demonstrators,” Dittrich said. “The court has done the right thing. The police should follow suit.”
LGBTI Pride marches have taken place in Budapest for several years. However, during the last few years the participants of Budapest Pride experienced attacks by nationalist and right wing extremists.