Hundreds of people have attended Kosovo’s first ever official LGBT Pride parade.
The event was held in the capital Pristina on Tuesday and follows unofficial marches in recent years to protest against homophobia and transphobia in the country.
Hashim Thaçi, Kosovo’s President and the man who led the country to independence in 2008, joined the parade.
— Hashim Thaçi (@HashimThaciRKS) October 10, 2017
Called “In the Name of Love”, it was organised by nine different non-governmental organisations, with the “historic occasion” set to become an annual October event.
Dua Lipa, an English pop star who was born in Kosovo, expressed her support for the event. “Kosovo had its first pride parade today in Prishtina. Love is love,” she said on Twitter.
Kosovo had its first pride parade today in Prishtina. Love is love. Në emër të dashnisë ❤️🏳️🌈
— DUA LIPA (@DUALIPA) October 10, 2017
Walking between two main squares in the city, participants chanted “There is no gender in love” as rainbow banners were waved and music was played.
The parade will help raise awareness of LGBT issues in the Balkan nation.
— Era (@hilariestan) October 10, 2017
Hundreds of people attended Kosovo's first ever Pride Parade, including President Thaci, w/ celebrations for the historic occasion still underway in Pristina pic.twitter.com/Dmg6w898Mk
— Balkan Insight (@BalkanInsight) October 10, 2017
— Edona Krasniqi (@eedn_) October 10, 2017
— Artan Haraqija (@ArtiHaraqija) October 10, 2017
A 2015 report the National Democratic Institution, a US organisation that promotes democratic institutions, found that gay and transgender people face significant levels of homophobia in the region.