The Communist Youth Organization celebrated a very successful pride parade presence this year. The 17th year of Stockholm Pride festivities included a week of seminars, music and performances that took place in Stockholm’s Cultural House and Pride Park, followed by a parade on Saturday August 2nd.
After several days of preparations, including the writing of banners, articles, petitions and posters, Communist Youth Organization (CYO) set out to make an explosive presence during this year’s parade. During the three days of the Pride Park music and performances festival, CYO setup an information table at the entrance of the Pride Park. The entrance of the Pride Park proved to be a key location to place the information table of the CYO as thousands of people lined up to enter the park. The goal of the CYO during the three days at the Pride Park was to inform everyone about the LGBT situation in Iran, to collect signatures for our petition, to record messages of solidarity from the LGBT community in Iran as well as fundraising. This year the CYO was present at the Pride festivities with the cooperation and solidarity of youth from Iran and Afghanistan.
The Pride Park presence of the CYO was an immense success. During the three days, thousands of people signed the CYO petition in regards to the LGBT community in Iran. Also, many youth volunteered to have their photograph taken beside the CYO banner that read “We must defend the Iranian LGBT community!” as well as recorded video messages in solidarity with the Iranian LGBT. Furthermore, over 1500 information leaflets were distributed among the people at the Pride Park and CYO members were ready to explain in detail about important concerns of the LGBT community in Iran.
The red banner that read “Stop the execution of gays in Iran!” attracted the attention of many of the participants at the Pride Park. Younger participants of the Pride Park often came to our information table to enquire more about the issues of the Iranian LGBT and were very disturbed to hear about the despicable actions of the Islamic regime of Iran against the LGBT community in Iran and were eager to sign our petition. Other Pride Park participants enthusiastically wanted to know more about the Communist Youth Organization and our various activities. Important media figures from large and small media networks also spoke with CYO members to collect more information about CYO’s presence at the Pride Park: including Stockholm’s Channel 4 news anchor. With the large public support of the Iranian LGBT in Stockholm, the CYO was also able to collect enough money to pay for some of CYO’s organizational costs in relation to the LGBT Pride festival as well as other protests and activities in the future.
The Pride Parade that took place on Saturday August 2nd was an enormous success for the CYO. The CYO was located near the front of the Parade, roughly the 20th out of the 200 other groups involved in the parade. The CYO’s presence was complete with a large number of CYO members, a car equipped with large speakers, banners, posters and recording equipment. Well prepared, the CYO had colour coordinated clothes for the members (LGBT colours), a dance routine to the song “Happy” by Pharrell Williams, as well as selection of songs that represented the current music taste of Iranian youth. The CYO presence at the Pride Parade was met with large support from the Stockholm public. Thousands of people photographed and video recorded the CYO and several members of the public joined the CYO line to dance and cheer as the parade travelled through the downtown heart of Stockholm.
Communist Youth Organization