Taiwan Hosts Asia's Largest Gay Pride Parade

March comes as island considers same-sex marriage

By Ruth Brown,  Newser Staff

Posted Oct 26, 2013 3:41 PM CDT

(Newser) – Tens of thousands of people marched in the Taiwanese capital of Taipei today, as part of the city's annual gay pride parade. The largest parade of its kind in Asia, the event doubled as a demonstration in support of same-sex marriage legislation currently being debated by the island's government, AFP reports. Taiwan is more progressive on gay rights than most of its neighbors, with 53% of the country in support of the bill, Reuters reports—but activists say there's a lot of room for improvement.

"Compared to other Asian countries, we're more open, but we still have a long way to go," says a spokeswoman for the parade. Still, for visiting attendees, the event symbolized hope for a more tolerant future. "Korea is much more conservative," says a South Korean who attended the parade for the first time this year. "I hope Taiwan will legalise gay marriage and we can follow their example."

Participants carrying placards reading: We love our gay friends march during the 11th LGBT pride parade in Taipei, Taiwan.
Participants carrying placards reading: "We love our gay friends" march during the 11th LGBT pride parade in Taipei, Taiwan.   (AP Photo/Lin Jui-ching)
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