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Serbia: International Day Against Homophobia

On the International Day Against Homophobia, marked on May 17, a Serbian lesbian human rights organization Labris has issued a statement.

Jasmina Tesanovic, a Serbian political activist and writer, re-posted the text of the statement on her B92 blog. Below is the translation from Serbian:

[Serbian Medical Association]: Homosexuality is not an illness.

Homosexuality is not an illness, according to the Serbian Medical Association's response to a request from Labris to check the official conclusion of the [World Health Organization, (WHO)].

On May 17, the International Day Against Homophobia – and as part of the “Are you a Homophobe?” initiative – Labris has turned again to SMA, the Serbian Medical Chamber and the future health minister. Labris expects the new minister to immediately declare that homosexuality is not an illness. Labris also expects the adoption of an ethics code about sexual orientation by the Serbian Medical Chamber, to help prevent discrimination against persons in need of medical care.

We remember that Labris – the organization for lesbian human rights – has been persistently trying this year to get numerous institutions, including the ministry of health, to issue a statement of agreement with WHO. One of the relevant domestic institutions – SMA – has expressed agreement with WHO. In this way, Labris wants to support other associations to join us in action of stamping out prejudices. May 17 is the day of promotion of lesbian and gay rights, because on this day in 1990 WHO officially took homosexuality off the list of mental illnesses.

Dragana Vuckovic

Labris – organization for lesbian human rights
Belgrade, Republic of Serbia
E-mail: lobi@labris.org.yu
Tel: + 381 11 334 1855, + 381 11 334 7401
E-mail: labris@labris.org.yu
Tel/fax: + 381 11 3225 065
Mob: +381 63 8 513 170
Web: www.labris.org.yu

Dawngreeter comments:

I am glad because of their step, but I am sure that they will be attacked from different sides. I think that it is very courageous to publish this statement, especially when it is unknown who will hold a stick in his hands [following the May 11 election, the new government is yet to be formed].

Drago Kovacevic replies to Dawngreeter‘s comment:

The attacks won't be too powerful. Everyone is afraid of doctors, because everyone has to deal with them one day.

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