In der Nacht auf Sonntag hat ein unbekannter Täter in dem Zagreber Nightclub „Super Super“ während der Party einen Behälter mit Tränengas geworfen. In der folgenden Panik wurden bei der Flucht aus dem Gebäude die BesucherInnen verletzt, hieß es. Laut dem Verband Zagreb Pride wurden mehrere Personen verletzt, nach Angaben der Polizei gab es zwei Verletzte, meldete die Nachrichtenagentur Hina.
Feature 22 Feb 17
Croatia’s LGBT Community Spooked by Nightclub Attack
A recent attack on an LGBT club night in Zagreb rekindled fears of persecution and raised concerns that Croatia has not made as much progress on gay rights as some had hoped.
Although many LGBT people still face insults and discrimination every now and then, they aren’t targeted for outright attack. Or at least they didn’t until tear gas was set off in the club during the LGBT party at the Super Super club in the early hours of February 12.
„In the toilet, some people said ‘tear gas’, and after that, it was easier because I realised we wouldn’t die after all. I touched my face and realized it was not burned although it continued to hurt,“ Grgic recalled.
“There was panic in the club. People were screaming ‘my eyes, I can’t breathe‘. In front of a small window, there were 15 people trying to breathe fresh air. I remember that the music continued to play and I wondered why it was still playing while we were dying here. Significantly, it was playing Shakira and her song ‘La Tortura’,“ she added.
The tear gas attack prompted LGBT rights group Zagreb Pride to organise a protest entitled ‘Love Is and Remains Stronger than Hate‘ the following day, which attracted more than 1,000 people.
The government strongly condemned the attack and promised a rapid investigation.
“The Croatian government will resolutely oppose any form of violence and hate speech, racial, religious and gender discrimination in the fight for equality, human dignity and safety of all our citizens,” it said.
|Protester ridiculing the Croatian WWII fascist chant ‚Za dom spremni‘ (‚Ready for the Home(land)‘). Photo: Beta|
Rights groups have demanded further action, however.
„This attack clearly shows that the thin line between hate and violence has been crossed,” Ivan Novosel, a member of the Zagreb Pride NGO, told BIRN.
“The hatred against the LGBT community has been increasing in Croatia since 2013 when the controversial referendum constitutionally defined marriage as a union between a man and a woman. This violence had to come sooner or later,“ he suggested.
Novosel argued that Croatia is seen as a country that respects LGBT rights because of its anti-discrimination law and its recognition of same-sex civil partnerships, but he said that prejudice is not being tackled in practice.
„Legislation is not enough, we need stronger political willpower to end the problem of LGBT discrimination,“ he said.
In 2013, Zagreb Pride conducted the largest Croatian survey of LGBTIQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Questioning) people, asking them about their experiences of violence, discrimination and hate crimes on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.
han 15 years ago, he believes that the fight for equality must continue.
„Since Croatia joined the EU [in 2013], the number of attacks on LGBT events has declined, but LGBT rights are still in jeopardy, not so much from political elites but rather from other radical groups who hide behind civil society and do what political parties are not allowed to do publicly,“ Bosanac argued.
Zagreb Pride said that the ruling Croatian Democratic Union, HDZ party had changed its image under the new leadership of Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic, a more