The Budapest Metropolitan Court has overruled the police decision of 11 February to ban this year’s Budapest Pride. The march was scheduled to take place on 18 June this year and was banned by police following the organisers’ attempt to extend the parade route.
The police originally declared that the march would disrupt traffic in the capital, but the Court found that “the negative consequences on traffic on the affected roads cannot in themselves be a justification for the prohibition.” They then continued to state that, should the initial reasoning of traffic obstruction have stood, “it would mean that virtually no public events could be held anywhere in Budapest.”
The Court has also declared that the police must enable campaigners to exercise their rights without fear of persecution or prejudice from counter-demonstrators. A spokesperson for the Rainbow Mission Foundation, who organise the event, made this statement:
“In June 2011 we will organise our march for the 16th time to show the diversity of our community, and through peaceful protest call the attention of policy makers and the broader society to the problems of LGBT people.”
Amnesty International has said that the Court’s decision “is a victory not only for LGBT people throughout Hungary, but also reinforces the right to freedom of peaceful assembly for all Hungarians.”