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Albanian Official: Gay Pride Marchers “Should Be Beaten With Billy Clubs”

It seems the leader of Albania’s royalist party likes his queens bloodied.

Ekrem Spahiu (seen right), who’s also the Balkan nation’s deputy defense minister, responded yesterday to the announcement by LGBT activists that they would hold the country’s first ever gay pride march on May 17.

“My only commentary on this gay parade is that they should be beaten with billy clubs,” uttered Spahiu.

Albanian gay rights advocates were quick to react to Spahiu’s fighting words.

“This is a call to violence,” said Kristi Pinderi, one of the country’s leading LGBT anti-discrimination activists. “We will ask through our lawyers that Spahiu be convicted, in accordance with Albanian law, to a prison sentence of up to five years.”

Though Albania passed a bill granting LGBT people anti-discrimination protections in 2010, homophobia is admittedly still rampant in the southeastern European country. Of the upcoming parade itself through the capital of Tirana, observers say it’s impossible to yet know how safe the marchers will be.

“We cannot predict whether there will be any reaction from the society or [whether it] will be smooth,” said Elsa Ballauri, an Albanian human rights activist.

In other aggressive anti-pride news from the Balkans this week, a Facebook group in Croatia — with the catchy title “Blood will flow in the streets of Split, there will be no gay parade” — drew international attention for advocating violence to stop the upcoming June 9 march in that country’s second largest city of Split.

Image via YouTube

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18 Comments

  • bruce

    Ekrem Spahiu should be be put in a jail cell with a fat sweaty prisoner on Viagra.

  • Heh

    I think Atlantis Cruises has a new port of call to add to their itinerary now!

  • House of Cabbagé

    Who is Billy Clubs?

  • milker

    Albania is a muslim cuntry so we should not be surprised??

  • milker

    Albania is a muslim c u n t r y so we should not be surprised??

  • Addy

    milker, albanians are atheist country…Is stupid to link religion with discrimination at at the time when you have many countries in Europe who discriminate gays openly.As a albanianian i am ashamed from those comments, but this official belong to the communist past an i understand we need some cleansing to do.

  • doomsday1038

    @milker: Many Christians feel the same way.

  • scott ny'er

    @Addy: I could be wrong but I bet most of the countries who discriminate (or have a large population of their citizens discriminate) against homosexuals are deeply rooted in religion (probably Christianity, Muslim and then Judaism).

  • Belize

    We should lend the Albanian pride our Billy Club wielding queen, JayKay. That way, he can show them, and the world, how civilized and evolved conservative hick queens are. Long gone are the days when his used to wield rocks and caveman clubs, I tell you. They too have the power to evolve.

  • Billysees

    @doomsday1038: Unfortunately that’s true, but only amongst the fundamentalists. But at least they “feel” that way but wouldn’t do that kind of thing themselves. I doubt they’d want to even see something like that actually happen. I might be wrong.

  • Tone

    @Heh: Oh SNAP!

  • Addy

    scott ny’er : The roots of the problem on our society isn’t religion(it is a wrong perception from outside)..I can say for sure that, if you visit Albania you will find some of the most agnostic people. We had banned religion for almost 50 years under the communism, so today we have a nation who doesn’t take religion seriously.The problem was, under the communism, gays were oppressed and discriminated. But today, i admit gays have a social stigma but at the regional level we are much better than our neighbors, comparing with physical attacks toward gays in Serbia,Croatia,ect. Our PM is planning since last year to legalize gay marriages(the only country in Balkans to do that. I admit this PM(vice) belong to the extreme right wing(Nationalist party)which during the WWII was a pro Fascist party, and they are in coalition in current government. It all comes to politics at the end

  • The Real Mike in Asheville

    Heart and hope, and happiness, to all our friends in Albania.

    Before broad stroking Albania as a land of hatred, do remember guys, it was but just 45 years ago (Stonewall riots), New York police raided, beat, arrested, intimidated, gays and lesbians, under cover of badge with official sanction. Gays and lesbians, right here in our “land of the free” are beaten and murdered every year, discriminated against every day, and we fight and fight and fight every day to make things better and right.

  • JTKlaus

    It’s okay, he’s not Black.

  • shannon

    JEEZ………….WHITE EUROPEANS ARE SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO HOMOPHOBIC!!

  • the crustybastard

    @Heh:

    You win teh innernets.

  • ousslander

    My two best female friends are Albanian. One catholic the other Muslim, whose family my partner and I celebrate Eid with every year.

  • Alexi3

    Albania? We have the nearve to throw rocks at Albania which has no historical legacy of democracy. Since when have Gay people in America been treated as equal citizens in anything but taxes. NO, come to think of it, many of aren’t even treated equally when it comes to taxation. We have a long way to go and a lot of work to do before we can start criticizing a country like Albania. Have you heard our President talk about a national law to recognize same-sex marriage?

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