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Polish appeals court orders four towns to scrap 'LGBT-free' declarations

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By Euronews
Warsaw mayor Rafal Trzaskowski and European Commissioner for Equality Hanna Dalli take part in the 'Warsaw and Kyiv Pride' marching for freedom in Warsaw, Poland, 25 June 2022
Warsaw mayor Rafal Trzaskowski and European Commissioner for Equality Hanna Dalli take part in the 'Warsaw and Kyiv Pride' marching for freedom in Warsaw, Poland, 25 June 2022   -   Copyright  Michal Dyjuk/AP

Gay rights activists are celebrating in Poland after a court ruled that four towns should scrap their status as "LGBT-free zones".

Poland's top appeals court dismissed the appeal of four municipalities over the controversial resolutions.

The verdicts in the towns of Istebna, Klwów, Osiek, and Serniki were welcomed on social media by Poland's Campaign Against Homophobia.

"Today's decision is a great victory for democracy, human rights and respect for people," it said in a post on Facebook.

Dozens of Polish towns and regions had declared themselves free of "LGBT ideology" in May 2019, sparking a dispute with the European Commission.

Poland's ruling conservative Law and Justice Party (PiS) claims that the so-called "LGBT ideology" undermines the country's religious family values.

But the bloc slammed Warsaw for violating EU laws against discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation and withheld funding to several Polish regions.

After a legal challenge from Poland's Human Rights Ombudsman, lower courts ruled that nine such "LGBT-free" resolutions must be scrapped, a decision upheld by the appeals court on Tuesday.

Last year, the regional assembly of Świętokrzyskie became the first in Poland to revoke its anti-LGBT resolution.

The EU Parliament has also passed its own resolution last year, declaring the entire 27-member EU a “freedom zone” for LGBT+ people.

Additional sources • Reuters