10th Annual Kyiv Pride goes ahead – in Warsaw

Kyiv Pride warsaw
Image: Maksym Eristavi Twitter

Ukraine’s largest LGBTIQA+ event, the annual Kyiv Pride Parade went ahead last night — in the neighbouring country of Poland. Warsaw Pride invited Kyiv Pride to lead their parade through the Polish capital.

About 300 LGBTIQA+ Ukrainians travelled to Warsaw for the event. Ukrainian flags fluttered alongside rainbow flags at the head of the combined Warsaw/Kyiv Pride parade.

Marchers chanted ‘Slava Ukraini’ – glory to Ukraine.

Kyiv Pride’s Maksym Eristavi said the 10th annual Kyiv Pride could not go ahead in Kyiv because of the danger from Russian bombings.

“Unfortunately, we cannot march in Kyiv. However, it’s important for us to still march. It’s still about pride, but pride in being Ukrainian and surviving through genocide.”

Standing together

Chairperson of the Warsaw Equality Parade, Julia Maciocha, said the Polish people and local LGBTIQA+ communities stood with their Ukrainian neighbours.

“We want to stand together against war, to walk for Ukraine’s freedom, for liberation, for equality, tolerance and acceptance.”

Many lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people joined the Ukrainian armed forces and resistance efforts following the Russian invasion earlier this year. Many also paid with their lives in the defence of their country.

Ukrainian activists defend their country’s record on LGBTIQA+ rights, stating that while their country is not perfect, it is a democracy, progress is being made and their lives were improving before the Russian invasion.

Anya Briggs summed it up in a response to a troll/Russian bot on Twitter.

“You know that Russia doesn’t recognize Gay/Queer/Trans/AI+ people at all, right? It’s actually against the law. Meanwhile, Ukraine is applying for EU status, is making reforms constantly, and is a democratically elected country.”

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