300 March in Poznan, Poland

Some 300 people joined the 4th GLBT Equality March in Poznan, Poland, Nov. 17. Poznan is the nation’s fifth largest city.

The marchers were protected by 400 police officers. Anti-gay protesters were limited to what one organizer called “a few … football hooligans.”

Politicians from leftist parties took part in the celebration.

In 2005, the city’s pride march was banned by Mayor Ryszard Grobelny. When activists took to the street anyway, they were pursued by members of All Polish Youth chanting, “Let’s gas the fags,” and blocked by riot and mounted police.

When police ordered the marchers to halt, they sat down in the street and 70 of them were aggressively arrested.

In 2006, the parade was allowed following harsh criticism from the European Union and rulings by Polish courts that the 2005 ban was illegal.

This year’s pride events also included parties, movies, art exhibits, lectures, a concert and an auction.

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