10 injured in Kiev gay rights demonstration, say organisers

The Kiev event was supported by the Elton John Foundation

Thousands of people attended the event in Kiev

Monday, June 19, 2017

Ten people have been injured in an attack by homophobic groups on a gay pride march in Kiev, according to organisers.

The organiser of Kiev Pride, Ruslana Panujnik, said "we are aware of seven attacks in which 10 people were injured", adding that a journalist was among those hurt.

Around 3,000 people took part in the march in the Ukrainian capital this weekend, according to Noticias 24.

"The march itself took place without incident," the organisers said. "Those who opposed it couldn't actually get near the column of protesters during the march, but they were allowed to behave regrettably at its conclusion."

The organisers added that the march received financial support from the Elton John Foundation, and this allowed them to pay for two large floats.

Ukraine has previously been the subject of unwelcome headlines about its perceived intolerance towards the LGBT community. Last month activist Olena Shevchenko gave a damning interview to Metro.co.uk, ahead of the Eurovision finals in Kiev.

Shevchenko said: "Central Kiev might be more or less safe and there are LGBT clubs, but don’t go out after midnight and don’t stay in those areas outside of the central region.

"Kiev is the most multicultural place [in Ukraine], but there are many examples of beatings and rape on account of people being LGBT.

"They are under reported because many will never go to the police."