Mayor guilty of discrimination against LGBT

BELGRADE -- The First Municipal Court has found Jagodina Mayor and United Serbia (JS) leader Dragan Marković guilty of “serious discrimination against LGBT population“.

Dragan Marković
Dragan Marković

The Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) has announced they hope that the ruling will not be overturned.

Marković is not allowed to repeat the discrimination and has been ordered by the court to compensate all court costs to the GSA.

The First Municipal Court accepted the suit filed by the GSA on August 22 and determined that the Jagodina mayor had committed an aggravated form of discrimination based on sexual orientation.

The GSA filed a lawsuit against Marković because of the statement he gave to the media on August 15, 2011, in which he said that “United Serbia's position and my personal position is that we are against every gathering where homosexuals are demonstrating in the streets of Belgrade and want to show something, which is a disease, like it is normal“.

The court said in the explanation of the verdict that “an aggravated form of discrimination has been determined, as well as expression and incitement of intolerance, hatred and intolerance based on sexual orientation, which represents an aggravated form of discrimination especially if it is done through media. In the specific case a personal characteristic, i.e. sexual orientation has been presented as a disease and something immoral by the respondent (Marković) in the media, which constitutes aggravated discrimination“.

A hearing in the case against Democratic Party of Serbia (DSS) councilor in the City of Belgrade Assembly Nebojša Bakarec has been scheduled in the First Municipal Court in Belgrade. The GSA filed a suit against Bakarec because of his text published at the website, in which he claimed that the LGBT persons were sick after all and that it was therefore necessary to provide professional help to them.