In pictures: Thousands join Pride parade in Taiwan

Participants jump in a pose while taking part in the annual Pride parade in Taipei

Tens of thousands of people have marched in the streets of Taiwan’s capital, Taipei, in the Pride parade, the first since the island legalised same-sex marriage in May.

More than 2,000 same-sex couples have married since then, and many of them took part in Saturday’s festival, one of the largest Pride events in the region.

“I’m very excited because it’s the first Pride parade after same-sex marriages are recognised and I got married,” 31-year-old Shane Lin, who became one of the first to wed his partner under the new law, told AFP news agency.

Participants wear stylised rainbow elephant masks as they take part in the annual Pride parade in Taipei

Self-ruled Taiwan, over which China claims sovereignty, is known for its liberal values. In May, the island became the first place in Asia to allow same-sex marriage after parliament approved it, despite opposition from conservative lawmakers.

The vote followed a ruling in 2017 by the country’s constitutional court, in a case brought by activist Chi Chia-wei and Taipei city authorities.

“We used to be worried and fearful, but we’ve accomplished it,” he told Reuters news agency. “So we’re all joining the Pride parade with joy.”

People participate in the annual Pride march in Taipei
People participate in the annual Taipei Pride march in Taipei
People participate in the annual Taipei Pride march in Taipei

Organisers said nearly 200,000 people from all over Asia had joined the colourful parade with decorated floats and balloons.

President Tsai-Ing-wen and her ruling Democratic Progressive Party have supported the event, which ends outside the Presidential Office.

Taiwan has been a leader for gay rights in Asia but, despite the celebrations, there is a sizeable group of people there opposed to same-sex marriage.

Participants pose for a selfie while taking part in the annual gay pride parade in Taipei
People participate in the annual Taipei Pride march in Taipei

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