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Ukrainian Activists Vow To Hold First Gay Pride Parade Despite Ban

Ukrainians in Kyiv held an antigay rally on May 14.
KYIV -- Gay activists say they will hold the first Pride parade in Kyiv this weekend despite a ban.

The "KyivPride-2013" Committee's spokeswoman, Olena Semenova, told RFE/RL that gay-rights defenders have "a plan B" and the event will take place anyway.

On May 23, a court in Kyiv upheld a request by city authorities to ban the march.

Authorities said the May 25 rally would disrupt celebrations for the annual Kyiv Day on the same day.

The court said the rally also risked sparking violence.

Last year, Pride organizers had to cancel the event at the last minute after skinheads gathered at its planned location in protest.

Although Ukraine decriminalized homosexuality in the early 1990s, hostility against gays and lesbians remains rife there and in other former Soviet states.