Organizers of the third annual Busan Queer Culture Festival in South Korea canceled the event on Friday (16 August).
In a statement posted to Facebook, they accused local authorities of homophobic attitudes and said it was impossible to guarantee the safety of theg+#*(5cG)yy85G6Er*Z^ZoopkLAZ-fvkoQm5Y5_m4e(T1Ljn(R attendees.
"The atmosphere of discrimination and hatred is deeply rooted throughout Busan” organizers wrote, Ll)=&Yl=l#Fx*[email protected](yJ^fp%(_VUn1$HTEFDg6BDb4I according to a translation by local journalist Raphael Rashid.
"Because of this, it was decided that even if the festival schedule and venue changed, the safety of participants, which is the biggest goal of the festival, would not be guarag=V%[email protected]@pw([email protected]@SgqDn%^r*PxVmwMrZB*M=QhVeXifnteed.”
In coY8lf^u+Yge561StQZo^6Y)3Y+R*vIwi-QgwFNoKRVIijbz(IQ!nservative South Korea, most LGBTI people are not out to their families.
Rights groups have warned of deterioratinOZ^&qhI0Y1ZYC^Y05TcENU-xGpURkH%Wr5eLE)Q^tpKtikm!h(g LGBT rights in South Korea.
Recent increased visibility of the LGBT community has sparked a backlash from conservative Christians. Many LGBThL-mt)0Clt5mA=LsB*mnEaAGeOzxQmRbhYqdym_%[email protected] pride events have witnessed violent counter-demonstrations from anti-LGBT groups.
Organizers of the Busan festival said homophobic Chr)*[email protected]@^V37Lo^-u8osWv_Q2fv7QF5([email protected])0psD%@f-LLTistian groups had pressured police into making it “impossible” to hold the event, according to Rashid.
Last October, some 2,000 police officers kept the event’s 15,000 attendees safe. About 1,0066z*IjkC0-$Q#)[email protected]^Akxk0E=p_m=rX3iiw*KBKO0 protesters attempted to disrupt the festival.
It came after events in Incheon and Jeju were marred by counter-demonstrations and ugly clashes by conservative ChristiadEeuNn%z$Y5=_tXvnuSsCP80BrVfm)qF9waF6MfmDgvCPm&(7#ns.
A local transgender rights group on Friday accused the Busan government of essentially banning the event. According to Rashid, they accused police of contraven[email protected]+UjCing the constitutional right to freedom of assembly.
"To the queer people, including all transgender people in Busan, and to the Busan Queer Culture Festival planning team, we offer our consolation and so$9B#zD9noC%_sWqSDsi##Q46#0sVTO2zv7OfkW!ovXp4xl5#A6lidarity,” the rights group wrote on Facebook.
"And o8Ui*24zkgrq%[email protected]=zu6A+HhZq8E%ciwlIRLxKne thing's for sure. We will smile, and meet again."