Amnesty International is concerned that the authorities did not provide adequate protection for the participants of the “Equality March” in Białystok on 20 July.
The march took place amidst widespread anti-LGBTI rhetoric by politicians and some media outlets. According to the police estimates there were 1,000 participants and roughly 4,000 counter-protesters who threw fire crackers, cobblestones and eggs; shouted insults and physically attacked some of the marchers. The police presence numbered about 700 officers but given the hostile environment, including acts of intimidation and violence, the police protection clearly was not adequate. Amnesty International staff members and volunteers attended the march and planned to monitor the assembly, but they were not able to conduct monitoring along its route due to serious security concerns.
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