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30 Aug, 2021 14:07

WATCH: More than 50 people arrested in Odessa after right-wing extremists attack police & participants at annual LGBT pride march

Some 51 members of the Ukrainian far-right group Tradition and Order have been arrested in the city of Odessa after clashes with police officers at the ‘Equality March’, an annual celebration in support of the LGBT community.

The same group attacked the march last year, when members of the Ukrainian neo-Nazi group fired pepper spray at participants, leading to 21 arrests.

This time, according to Odessa’s police, even more have been detained. Video from Saturday’s event shows several people firing pepper spray in the direction of the police, injuring 29 officers.

“Approximately 20 minutes after the end of the rally, a group of provocateurs showed inappropriate behavior towards the police and ran up to them for a fight on Deribasovskaya Street and used tear gas,” the report says.

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“Such actions of provocateurs were obviously aimed at trying to undermine the situation in Odessa and to test the strength of law enforcement officials,” the head of the regional police Nikolay Seminishyn said. “Odessa has always been and remains safe for residents and guests.”

Speaking to Ukrainian news outlet Dumskaya, the Odessa Pride organizing committee head Anna Leonova revealed that many people didn’t come to the event because of last year’s attack, scared the scenes would repeat themselves – fears that were clearly not unfounded.

As well as opposing LGBT rights, Tradition and Order is actively opposed to pro-Russia, left-wing, and populist politicians.

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