Cameroon: Youths disrupt Pride, burn advocacy office

An attack by anti-gay youths shut down a gay advocacy organization and forced the cancellation of Saturday’s planned gay Pride celebration and anti-AIDS gathering in Kribi in south coastal Cameroon.

Saturday, Jan. 5, was supposed to be the first annual “Night of the Mermaids” in Kribi, an event that would combine AIDS education and gay pride celebrations, including beach activities in the afternoon, a Pride Night, and selection of Mr. and Miss Ocean.

It was organized by the Cameroonian Association for the Defense of Vulnerable People (Acodevo), based in the Mboa Manga neighborhood of Kribi.

But on Jan. 4, as Acodevo members were preparing for the festivities in the organization’s office, four youths from the neighborhood arrived and began making trouble.

They said they were upset that the event was planned during a period of mourning for the traditional chief of the Batanga people, Marcel Mahouve III, who died in a traffic accident on Jan. 2.

They began vandalizing the Acodevo office, overturned a projector, drew knives and threatened to kill Acodevo members. They trashed the office and set part of it on fire. Read more via African Human Rights Media Network