Thousands of people turned up for Kharkiv’s first Pride parade, despite right-wing protesters trying to intervene. An estimated 2,000 people celebrated on September 15 in the Ukrainian city, which is its second largest.
More than 5,000 locals signed a petition against the parade, and Kharkiv’s mayor Hennadiy Kernes threatened legal action to prevent it from happening. Roughly 500 protesters were present during the march, and violence reportedly left three marchers and two police officers injured. Police say 17 people were detained.
Reports say the parade was contained to a main square due to the heavy police presence and backlash from the opposition.
“Lovely participants and participants! We are incredibly proud of you, for us and for Kharkiv!” the KharkivPride Facebook group stated in a post. “Today we showed the choice of our city—we chose equality, safety and human rights!”