Press Release Concerning the Homophobic Attack on Café Open
We, the employees of the Peace Institute are strongly condemning the homophobic attack on Café Open on Thursday 25 June 2009 committed by unknown camouflaged individuals.
The attack was directed towards the bar in which at that time the literature event of gay and lesbian poetry was taking place. The fact that it was not just any attack but a homophobic attack committed on the basis of hatred based on sexual orientation is confirmed by the fact that camouflaged individuals during the attack with stones and burning torches were exclaiming „death to the faggots“ which is excluding the possibility of random violence.
We are joining the calls directed to authorities, especially the police, to take the attack seriously, to investigate it and consider it as a homophobic act and, in the case of pressing criminal charges, to point out the homophobic motive as an aggravating circumstance against the perpetrators. At this point we also call upon the authorities to specify aggravated forms of crimes in of violence and endangering safety in the Penal Code, if these crimes are committed due to hatred based on personal circumstance such as sexual orientation, race or ethnicity. By doing so the authorities would send out a clear message that criminal offenses committed from hatred are especially resentful.
We also invite the authorities to annul the discriminatory Registration of a Same-Sex Civil Partnership Act and recognize equal rights of same-sex partners with heterosexual couples in the Family Code which is being prepared.
We support the response of individuals and representatives of the authorities and organizations who have condemned such violent behavior and we invite also others, in particular the Prime Minister and the President of the Republic, to join the public conviction and to declare themselves against all forms of hatred and discrimination.
The Peace Institute employees