Lawyer Cedomir Stojkovic has announced he will press charges for abuse of office against officials of the Interior Ministry who, as he put it, have illegally and unconstitutionally banned the holding of a march as part of the LGBT event EuroPride.
Stojkovic told the Sept. 16 issue of daily Danas that "no participant in Pride or any other public gathering can be punished if they come to a public gathering the organization of which the Interior Ministry has banned." "The only one who can be punished is the organizer and no one else, and only by a fine in the amount of 150,000 dinars. If that ends up being the case, I suggest to the freedom-loving Serbia that we collect a donation for the organizer for that within a minute. Therefore, no one should be afraid of empty threats from the Higher Public Prosecutor's Office in Belgrade because the law does not allow punishing participants in a public gathering, rather only the organizer," said the lawyer.
The Higher Public Prosecutor's Office in Belgrade on Sept. 15 called for respecting the Interior Ministry's decision that banned a march within EuroPride, but also of so-called street liturgies, i.e. a rally of EuroPride opponents. Both events have been announced for Sept. 17. The Prosecutor's Office warned that failure to abide by provisions of the Public Assembly Act was subject to misdemeanor liability, and that fines ranged from 30,000 to two million dinars, depending on whether the regulations were violated by natural persons or legal entities.
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