Anti-Gay Legislation Rejected by Bulgarian Parliament

Criminal punishment for Homosexual Orientation


Bulgarian MPs have rejected a controversial legislative amendment providing criminal punishment for openly professing one's homosexual orientation. The amendment to Bulgaria's Criminal Code was

proposed by nationalist party Ataka, and was swiftly seen as harsher than the notorious allegedly anti-gay legislation in Russia. The proposal provided for 1 - 5 years in prison and a fine of BGN 5,000 -

10,000 for persons who "by organizing or participating in events, rallies and parades, or through the media and the internet publicly manifest their own or of other persons homosexual orientation". The

amendment was rejected in November by the parliamentary committee on human rights and citizens' complaints as unconstitutional and discriminatory. Unexpectedly, however, it was put onto

Parliament's agenda and was discussed in plenary Wednesday. Ataka MPs argued for the proposal using, among other things, references from the Bible.

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