2 charged with 'desecrating' Christ statue, others with LGBT flags in Poland

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Aug 06 2020 06:08 AM

WARSAW - Polish police said Wednesday they have charged two people with desecrating monuments after LGBT activists draped rainbow flags over several statues in Warsaw last week including one of Jesus Christ.

"Warsaw police have charged two people over the desecration of Warsaw monuments," spokesman Sylwester Marczak said, quoted by the Polish news agency PAP. 

"We as the police are conducting legal proceedings not because someone hung a flag but because by doing so they offended religious feelings and notably desecrated the monument of Christ," he added.

Police detained one of the individuals on Monday and the other Tuesday. They have since been released. 

Statues of Copernicus and the Warsaw mermaid were among the other monuments draped last week with LGBT flags and bandanas bearing an anarchist symbol.

Activists including the gay rights group Stop Bzdurom (Stop The Nonsense) posted an online manifesto to explain their act.

"This is an assault! A rainbow. It's an attack! We decided to act. So long as I'm afraid to hold your hand. So long as there are still vans with homophobic signs on the street," the manifesto said.

Only 29 percent of Poles support gay marriage, according to a 2019 opinion poll by the CBOS institute. 

President Andrzej Duda likened "LGBT ideology" to communism before he was re-elected last month. 

Several Polish regions have adopted resolutions declaring themselves "LGBT ideology-free zones".

That kind of official stance regarding the LGBT community led the European Commission to reject applications last month from six Polish towns hoping to take part in a subsidized twinning program.