Pride March Plans Stir Hostility in Still Conservative Moldova

There have been some positive developments. In 2019, the Moldovan LGBT rights group Genderdoc-M successfully held a Pride march in the capital Chisinau, though, unfortunately, participants had to be accompanied by police escort.

Since the PAS government came to power in 2021, some members of the LGBT community have even been appointed to prominent positions. Viorel Ursu, an openly gay man, was recently made Ambassador to the United States.

Some activities are planned to celebrate this year's Pride month; it was recently announced that a series of LGBT events would take place in Chisinau between June 16 and 19.

However, the announcement of these events has also caused a backlash, particularly among traditionally pro-Russian parties.

In the Autonomous Territorial Unit of Gagauzia, in southern Moldova, the People's Assembly, the region's legislative body, passed an anti-gay law, "On the prohibition of propaganda of non-traditional relations, LGBT, in the territory of ATU Gagauzia".

The new law confirms the "traditional family" as the basis of Gagauz society, prohibits promotion of "non-traditional relations", and bans local media from publishing anything positive relating to same-sex couples.

Orthodox priests with believers take part in a protest against a rally organized by the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) community in front of Stefan cel Mare monument in Chisinau, Moldova, 19 May 2019. The protesters ask to maintain the traditional family and to fight with the LGBT propaganda. EPA-EFE/DUMITRU DORU

Deputies from the assembly justified the new discriminatory law, insisting it would "protect children" and "improve the values of the people living in Gagauzia".

The Gagauz law has led to an...

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