Some 1,000 people participated in a gay-pride march in the Romanian capital, Bucharest, on May 20 to protest actions by lawmakers they say will restrict their rights.
U.S. Ambassador Hans Klemm and some 30 other ambassadors were among those expressing support for the marchers and calling for the protection of LGBT rights.
The march has been held the past 13 years in Romania, which decriminalized homosexuality in 2001.
This year’s protest focused on an initiative recently approved by lawmakers that could amend the constitution to state that marriage is a union between a man and woman.
Current wording states marriage is a union between "spouses."
The marchers observed a moment of silence as they passed the Russian Embassy to express solidarity with gays in Chechnya.
The European Parliament on May 18 called on the authorities in Chechnya to allow international human rights organizations to conduct “a credible investigation into the alleged crimes against men perceived to be gay” in the North Caucasus republic amid reports many have been detained and tortured.
In nearby Moldova, leaders of the LBGT community said they will hold a march in Chisinau on May 21 to protest what they perceive as antigay legislation.
Moldovan President Igor Dodon has criticized the march, saying the "actions contradict our traditional values."
Based on reporting by AP, AFP, dw.com, and Interfax