Update: Sofia Pride Safe Despite Threats

The Sofia Pride parade in Bulgaria’s capital city took place on Saturday under threat of violence. But according to news reports, the march was mostly peaceful. The Christian Science Monitor reports that the estimated 1,500 to 2,000 marchers were protected from about 200 counter-protesters by 600 police. Also in attendance were several ambassadors, including American Ambassador James Warlick, who told a Bulgarian TV station, “We should all live our lives the way we wish… No one should be abused and tortured because of some prejudice.” The Orthodox Church had called for the march to be banned; one official criticized a priest’s call for protestors to throw rocks at police, but insisted that the very existence of the gay pride march “violates the rights of Orthodox Christians.” Now why does that sound so familiar?