Rui Moreira “wanted to boycott” LGBTI+ march day in downtown Porto

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The coordinator of the BE, Mariana Mortágua, considered today that the mayor of Porto, Rui Moreira, “wanted to boycott” the day of the LGBTI+ Pride March of the city, which takes place this afternoon in the center, heading to Cordoaria.

“There was an appeal by this LGBT Pride March against an authoritarian decision by President Rui Moreira, who wanted to boycott this day, which is a day of struggle for human rights, a day of struggle for equality, for democracy, for freedom,” Mariana Mortágua told journalists.

The BE coordinator was speaking at the start of the march, which began in Praça da República, with thousands of people in the Teófilo Braga Garden.

For Mariana Mortágua, “Rui Moreira didn’t want the march’s celebrations, this day of struggle, to take place in the city center,” accusing the Oporto mayor of preferring “the old model, in which people have to hide, have to leave the city center, can’t show themselves as they are, where everyone sees them.

“We are here to tell the mayor of Porto, together with these thousands of people, that with or without his license the Porto LGBT march will celebrate, will make its day of struggle in the center of Porto,” he stressed.

On Monday, on the sidelines of an executive meeting, Rui Moreira (independent) stated that the municipality “is neither heard nor seen” regarding the realization of the initiative.

“The march can be organized wherever they want. They can start wherever they want, end wherever they want, on the day they want and at the time they want,” said the mayor, saying that, as with other demonstrations, it only has to be reported to the Public Security Police.

“A different issue”, he considered, is the realization, after the march, of the festival, for which the organizers requested financial and logistical support from the municipality, which agreed to the logistical support part, eventually suggesting, after several days of polemics and exchanges of positions and suggested locations, Covelo or Fontainhas.

Last week, even before definitively suggesting Fontainhas, the Porto City Hall had also argued that holding the LGBTI+ (acronym for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and other sexual orientations and gender identities) Pride March arraial in the city center “would not facilitate mobility” on a weekend with several events.

For Mariana Mortágua, “Rui Moreira has given no sign, at any point in this process, of being, in fact, concerned with people’s mobility, because there are several other events in Porto that put people’s mobility at risk and were not boycotted by the mayor.

The BE coordinator considered that “what the mayor doesn’t want is the celebration of the LGBT March in the city center, for everyone to see.

“We’ve been through it and we’re not going back. And that’s why all these people are telling the mayor that they don’t need his license,” he stressed.

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