Tallinn not to ban gay pride parade

  • 2005-08-12
TALLINN 's Despite opposition by clerics, the Tallinn city government reportedly said it could not ban Saturday's gay pride in Tallinn.

Municipal secretary Toomas Sepp told the Eesti Paevaleht daily that it was impossible for the city to ban the parade since the procession was a public meeting, not a public event.

"We cannot ban public meetings 's we can only register them. Only the interior minister or the police chief has the right to ban it," Sepp said.

Neither of the two has banned the parade, an analogous one of which caused clashed and controversy in Riga on July 23.

The conservative Pro Patria Union and the Estonian Christian People's Party have slammed the parade, saying it propagates an immoral sex life.

A Narva-based member of Pro Patria wrote that it would be inappropriate to carry out the parade at a time when Estonia has been hit by a helicopter crash with fourteen victims.

Mayor of Tallinn Tonis Palts said the gay pride could not be an aim by itself for the city. "But once there are interested people, organizers and participants, let them have their march," he said.