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Romanian Orthodox Church #homophobia #fundie balkaninsight.com

ROMANIAN CHURCH WANTS PRIDE WEEK PLAY BANNED

Marcel Gascón Barberá | June 13, 2019

The Romanian Orthodox Church said on Wednesday that the play, called ‘I am Too. So What?’, which has been staged during Pride Week in the Transylvanian city of Cluj, should be banned.

The church said in a statement that a law from 2006 that “forbids any form” of “religious defamation” or “public offence towards religious symbols”.

“Accordingly, we have pleaded for the law to be respected in its spirit and its letter,” the statement said.

It described the play as “an act of ideological anti-Christian propaganda”.

But the Cluj Pride Week organisers denied the play has any intention of denigrating Christianity and its values.

The show instead targets “religious extremists” and the “fake religiosity” that some use to attack the most “vulnerable”, the organisers said.

They also pointed out that the play has been performed before at other venues not associated with the gay community, without prompting any negative reactions.

This shows that the Church is just looking for an excuse to push its “extremist” agenda against gays, they added.

The Romanian Orthodox Church is known for its hostility towards homosexuality.

In 2018, it strongly supported a referendum to change the definition of marriage in the constitution.

The Romanian constitution defines marriage as the union of two spouses. The promoters of the referendum wanted this changed to a new formula that explicitly defined marriage as the union of a man and a woman.

But the bid to constitutionally block a potential legal recognition of same-sex marriages in the country failed, as the turnout didn’t reach the 30 per cent threshold set for the referendum to be deemed valid.

According to official statistics, more than 80 per cent of Romanians declare themselves Orthodox.

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Croatian attackers #racist balkaninsight.com

Croatian Police Arrest Two After Attack on Serbs

Anja Vladisavljevic | June 10, 2019

Police arrested two people on Sunday on suspicion that they participated in an attack earlier that day on a group of five younger people in Supetar, a small town on the Croatian island of Brac.

The young people who were attacked were Croatian citizens doing seasonal work on Brac, among them two Croatian Serbs. They sustained minor injuries as a result of the incident.

One of the victims said that the attackers made anti-Serb comments.

“These two guys who were with us were from [the town of] Vukovar, but Serbs, and probably the attackers heard them talking. And then they… shouted: ‘Who is the Serb among you?’ and ‘Kill the Serb’,” the victim, who was not identified by name, told media.

He said that the attackers punched them for ten minutes before a taxi driver came and saved them.

The attack happened after the Torcida Cup, a football tournament that brings together local fans of FC Hajduk Split, which took place in Supetar on Saturday.

On Monday, the mayor of Supetar, Ivana Markovic, condemned the ethnically-based attack and said she had decided to withdraw a planned financial donation to the Torcida Cup tournament.

“Since the attackers were participants or visitors to the Torcida Cup, I decided to withdraw the donation decision because the town of Supetar cannot encourage sports events in which participants or visitors are expressing hate,” Markovic told local media.

{Vman’s note: According to one of the victims, there were 15-20 attackers in total. Last I heard, the President and the Prime Minister also condemned the attack.}

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Ruža Tomašić #wingnut #racist balkaninsight.com

Croatian MEP Condemned for ‘Repulsive’ Ustasa Sympathies

Anja Vladisavljevic | June 5, 2019

Holocaust historian Efraim Zuroff from the Jerusalem-based Simon Wiesenthal Centre called upon Croatian political leaders on Wednesday to reject MEP Ruza Tomasic’s recent statements of sympathy for the Ustasa movement.

Zuroff alleged that Tomasic was attempting to whitewash the large-scale atrocities committed by the Ustasa and the WWII-era Independent State of Croatia, the NDH.

“Ruza Tomasic is considered by many Croatians to be an excellent MEP with impressive achievements in her previous terms on behalf of Croatia. It might have been possible to overlook her activities on behalf of Croatian extremists, if she had sincerely renounced fascism and the genodical policies of the NDH,” Zuroff said.

“Since that is not the case, however, and she still expresses support for a movement which should be universally condemned, we urge Croatian leaders to unequivocally distance themselves from the dangerous and repulsive views of MEP Ruza Tomasic,” he added.

On Friday, Novosti, a weekly newspaper for the Croatian Serb ethnic minority, revealed that Tomasic had published poems glorifying Ustasa and NDH leader Ante Pavelic, and had been photographed wearing an Ustasa uniform while living in Canada in the 1970s and 1980s.

Asked to comment, Tomasic said that she still sympathises with the Ustasa movement, but differentiated between what she called “regular Ustasa” and those who committed crimes after 1941, when they came to power in Croatia.

“The Ustasa movement is one thing, and the NDH is another… Many crimes were committed during WWII. During those four years, the NDH separated itself from what the Ustasa movement represented,” Tomasic told Novosti.

She said that anyone who committed crimes should be condemned, but added that she doesn’t denounce “the regular Ustasa who fought for their homeland”.

Tomasic confirmed those statements to other local media. On Friday, she also told right-wing website Direktno that the photo of her wearing Ustasa uniform published in Novosti was genuine.

At the recent European Parliament elections, Tomasic’s newly-formed Croatian Sovereignist coalition won 8.52 per cent of the votes, giving her another mandate. In 2013, she was a candidate of the now-governing Croatian Democratic Union, HDZ.

Under the rule of the NDH, a WWII fascist puppet state of Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy, over 30,000 of around 40,000 Jews who were living on the its territory were killed.

At the Jasenovac concentration camp, the Ustasa murdered 13,116 Jews, along with 47,627 Serbs, 16,173 Roma and 6,229 victims from other nationalities, according to a confirmed list of victims’ names.