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EU Condemns Homophobic Violence At Ukraine's First-Ever Pride Parade

The European Union has denounced the violent disruption of peaceful events organized on May 19-21 in the Ukrainian capital Kiev in connection with the country's first ever pride parade involving hundreds of LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) activists.

In statement on Thursday, EU Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton voiced her deep concerns over the violence unleashed by a group of ultra-conservative youths during the "Kyiv Pride."

Expressing her "solidarity with the victims of these acts," she urged the Ukrainian authorities to investigate the violent incidents "thoroughly and to bring the perpetrators to justice."

Ashton also called on the Ukrainian authorities "to protect and to enforce the rights of all Ukrainians, including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons, to peaceful assembly and to freedom of expression."

According to the statement, the EU Head of Delegation received the organizers of the "Kyiv Pride" to express support and commitment of the High Representative to the protection of human rights of all Ukrainians without discrimination.

"The European Union will use the forthcoming bilateral meetings to discuss the issue with the Ukrainian authorities," the statement added.

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