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Wednesday, 4 April, 2001, 17:23 GMT 18:23 UK
No love for Berlin parade
Love Parade
Love Parade 2000 at Berlin's Tiergarten
Berlin authorities have refused to allow the Love Parade music festival to take place this July because of a planned counter protest by environmentalists.

The demonstrating environmentalists complain that the Love Parade, which drew more than 1.3 million visitors last year, causes damage to the park where it takes place.

Dancer at Love Parade 2000
Environmentalists don't object to the parade just to park damage
The environmentalists applied for permission to hold a protest in the park on 14 July 2001 last September.

This effectively blocked the application of the Love Parade organisers, who did not apply until the following month.

Berlin Mayor Eberhard Diepgen appealed to the organisers of the parade to move it to another date.

But Love Parade spokesman Enric Nitzsche said they cannot reschedule since participants and travel agencies have already made plans.

The Love Parade - which consists of dancing techno-fans following speaker-laden trucks through Berlin's Tiergarten Park - has been held on the second Saturday in July since 1989.

It began as a small procession of 150 people but has evolved into a huge party, with the side-effects of crime and litter on a grand scale.

Berlin Love Parade
Glitter and glamour are de rigeur for the Berlin festival
The city senator responsible for internal affairs, Eckardt Wertheback, said that all the Saturdays around 14 July are also booked this year.

Love Parade organisers have said that other routes or other dates are unacceptable.

Werthebach said he still hoped the event would take place this year, citing the boost it gives to Berlin's image as a lively, young metropolis.

The Love Parade brings millions of pounds of business for Berlin shops, hotels and restaurants.

It is not clear if an alternative route will be found in time for this year's parade, but the organisers have secured the date for 2002.

See also:

28 Jan 00 | Entertainment
Love Parade hits the UK
11 Jul 99 | Europe
Berlin gets loved up
11 Jul 99 | Europe
In pictures: A city in love
08 Jul 00 | Europe
One million dance to techno beat
08 Jul 00 | Europe
Rome march for gay rights
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