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News > World

First Gay Irish PM Joins Global LGBTQ Pride Parades

  • Participants take part in the annual Gay Pride parade in Paris, France, June 24, 2017.

    Participants take part in the annual Gay Pride parade in Paris, France, June 24, 2017. | Photo: Reuters

Published 24 June 2017

French marches dominated by calls for assisted medical procreation.

Tens of thousands of people have been marching in Ireland, France and the Philippines to celebrate the love and rights of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) community.

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An estimated 30,000 people took part in this year’s Dublin Pride Parade.

Organizers encouraged people from all communities to take part to show prejudice has no hold in Ireland.

Two years ago, the country voted in favour of same sex marriage, a landmark ballot for the traditionally Catholic nation.

And in another precedent, Ireland's first openly gay Prime Minister Leo Varadakar attended Saturday's event.

Addressing the crowd, Varadkar said: "I pledge as Taoiseach to use my office, for as long as I hold it, to advance the cause of LGBT rights, to press for marriage equality across Ireland, to speak up for LGBT rights around the world where they are under attack, and to push for the implementation of the sexual health strategy here at home at a time when it is more important than ever."

Forty years after the first march in Paris, participants in the the French capital's Gay Pride Parade were demonstrating in the streets demanding unrestricted assisted medical procreation (PMA) for all. 

France's new President Emmanuel Macron promised during his campaign that he would support a law to open the PMA to single women and lesbian couples. 

"It is urgent to legislate on the subject," Clemence Zamora-Cruz, spokesman for the Inter-LGBT, said on the event website. "It's a public health issue, and it's also a social justice issue.”

Under the theme “Here Together,” the 23 Metro Manila Pride march in the Philippine city of Marikina called for the community and its allies to come together to fight for equal rights. 

“Many LGBTQ+ people are scared. They deny themselves their truths because they face discrimination and violence in the very places where they should have been safe,” Nicky Castillo, Co-Coordinator of Metro Manila Pride, told to TheInquirer. 

“At the Pride March and Festival, we provide people with a space where they can express their true selves without fear. But this year, we also want to call on the non-LGBTQ+ people who support us to stand up, speak out, and march on for us,” he added. 

Marches are also taking place in Mexico City and El Salvador.

And more big turnouts are expected on Sunday in other cities including New York, Seattle, Chicago and Toronto.

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