A married couple have been arrested for bringing an explosive device to an LGBTI march in Poland, according to Polish broadcaster TVN24.
A court in the eastern city of Lublin approved a prosecutor’s request to detain the unnamed couple for three months after they were arrested with a homemade explosive device at the II Equality March on September 28. According to the prosecutor, the husband prepared the device that his wife was found carrying in a backpack.
“One person pleaded not guilty and stated that she had not been aware of what was in the backpack. The other admitted to constructing these devices on his own, and intending to use them during the II Equality March in Lublin,” the prosecutor explained.
On Monday, a press officer from Lublin Metropolitan Police, Commissioner Kamil Gołębiowski, said that the devices were composed of containers filled with gas, connected to firecrackers
“These people have been charged with possession, jointly and in concert, of home-made explosive devices, that, if used, could have posed a danger to life and health of many people,” prosecutor Bartosz Frąk said on Wednesday.
The couple were among dozens who were arrested trying to disrupt the LGBTI Pride march in Lublin, 170 km southeast of Warsaw on Saturday. The march was initially banned by the city council citing security concerns, but the decision was overturned by the courts after it was appealed by LGTBI organisations.
Participants waving rainbow flags and banners with inscriptions like “Jesus taught love” and “Homophobia threatens Polish families” were attacked by far-right demonstrators shouting homophobic slogans and throwing eggs and bottles. The police then used water cannons and tear gas to disperse them; some 30 people were arrested.
In Poland, where general elections are being held on October 13, LGTBI rights have taken central stage in the electoral campaign, with the ruling nationalist and conservative Law and Justice (PiS), criticising the LGTBI movement as an “enemy” of “homeland values.”