Locals in the Croatian town of Imotski cheered as they burnt an effigy of a gay couple and their baby to a crisp. See the footage below.
People of the town decorated the effigy and paraded it through the streets before setting it down to burn.
The two men depicted were kissing and wrapped in a rainbow scarf. They were also holding a doll to symbolise a child.
One of the faces of the men bore similarities to left-wing Social Democratic Party MP Nenad Stazić.
Stazić recently made news in Croatia for saying same-sex couples should be allowed to foster children.
This angered attendees of the effigy burning though who were more than willing to see a copy of his face burn.
“My head is spinning from this culture of death,” an announcer at the burning told the crowd.
“This year, let’s set this grotesque family with baby Nenad Stazić on fire!”
Croatian president condemns effigy burning
But the president of Croatia, Zoran Milanović has taken to Facebook to slam the town.
He said the festival is obviously dangerous and promotes hatred and violence.
“The symbolic burning of the same-sex couple with a child is Imotski is inhumane, unpleasant and totally unacceptable,” the post said.
“Hatred for others, intolerance and inhumanity are not and will never be a Croatian tradition.”
He also said he is concerned about the repercussions of the effigy burning on Croatian citizens.
“[We] will be monitoring the response of our public institutions,” President Milanović said.
“Especially since [the burning] was watched by many children who witnessed the spread of hate and incitement of violence.”
An uproar from the LGBTIQ community
Additionally, several LGBTIQ members and groups have condemned the effigy burning.
Daniel Martinovic, coordinator for The Rainbow Family Association said he is concerned for the upcoming generations of Croatia.
“What kind of message is being sent to our children, children who nowadays in Croatia grow up with lesbian mothers or gay fathers?” Martinovic said.
“Burning a gay couple, and even worse, a child, directly calls for hatred,
“Such an act is an unacceptable incitement to hatred, discrimination and violence,
“[It] spreads the hostile environment towards both rainbow families and to children in the foster care system,” he said.
Croatian LGBTIQ campaigners have also said they will file an official criminal complaint against the organisers.
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