“We have had peace and quiet for two years, but now the gay pride organizers are at it again, submitting another application for a public gathering,” said Ameriks. He also mentioned the huge costs it takes to keep the peace during these parades.
“If there is no other way, the best option would be for the gathering to take place in a closed area, like last time in Vermanes Park in central Riga. If they wish, they can gather there,” the politician asserted.
On 2 February, the Riga City Council received an application from the Latvian alliance of lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transsexuals and their friends ‘Mozaika’ to organize a gathering and a parade in Riga on 2 June. It is part of a week-long event that includes film screenings, gallery exhibitions and workshops. The organizers wish to hold the event on Friendship Day, with the aim of informing society of the situation of Latvia’s gay, lesbian and bi-sexual community. The organizers also wish to achieve equal rights for individuals, rights that are not based on sexual orientation.
The march has been proposed to begin on Gertrudes Street in the center of Riga to Vermanes Park, where various events will take place throughout the day.
The organizers of the event estimate that approximately 650 people could participate in the gay pride, with many foreign guests arriving as well.
The event in Riga is part of the annual Baltic Pride that runs alterantely in the three Baltic capitals. Last year, the event was hosted by Tallinn and in 2010, the Baltic Pride took place in Vilnius.