COMPLAINT FOR CENSORSHIP AND DISCRIMINATION BY ACCEPT-LGBT CYPRUS

COMPLAINT FOR CENSORSHIP AND DISCRIMINATION BY ACCEPT-LGBT CYPRUS

Accept-LGBT Cyprus regrets to announce that on Friday afternoon, 21 November 2014, Cyprus Police proceeded with the confiscation of the photo exhibition “Correction” of the Greek Trans Activist Paola Revenioti that was organised as part of a series of events relating to Transgender Day of Remembrance which is held internationally on the 20th November.

The exhibition was seized following a complaint received by the police by a citizen who disagreed with the content of the photographs which depicts life through the lens of Ms. Revenioti.

It should be noted that, Accept, in an attempt to protect the exhibits during the normal operations of the market, had them covered. During the day some of the exhibits were noticed to have been partially unveiled and the municipal staff proceeded with their immediate recovering. The exhibits were therefore covered both at the time of the complaint as well as at the time of the seizure from the police.

The Police that came to the place of the exhibition confiscated all of the art exhibits following only a single complaint and proceeded to the questioning of the President of the organisation, Costa Gavrielides, officially charging him with “Publication of Lewd Content" in public space.

Furthermore it should also be noted that the police did not previously inform either the municipality of Nicosia, that had licensed the space of the market for the Exhibition, or the Organisation, so as to remove the “offensive” exhibits itself.

The Police eventually allowed the return of some of the photos, and withheld others that depict male nudity, as evidence for the subsequent trial.

Accept denounces this incident as mere censorship and believes that the Organisation itself along with its movement have been targeted while, the seizing stands against any artistic expression that does not lie with the obsolete notions of the Police and the State as to what is should be considered art.

The organisation has already filled an official complaint regarding the incident to the National Anti-discrimination Body, the Office of the Ombudsperson, and will further make a formal complaint to the local authorities as well as the European Parliament and the European Commission.

The documentary screenings of Ms. Revenioti, "Kaliarnta", continued on Saturday, November 21, as announced initially.

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