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Taiwan Pride marches for marriage equality this year

Taiwan Pride marches for marriage equality this year

Tens of thousands have turned out to support the LGBTI community in the progressive island state

Taiwan Pride 2016 had one of its largest turnouts this year with ‘tens of thousands’ marching on Saturday, October 29.

The festival, which took place in the capital Taipei, featured attendees in traditional dress, as well as swimsuits and wedding dresses.

One major theme of this year’s Parade was the fight for marriage equality.

Banners with the words: ‘How long will tongzhi [gay and lesbian people] have to wait?’ called for equal marriage rights for LGBTI people in the Chinese territory.

Taiwan is one of the most progressive of East Asian countries. A poll last year found 71% of Taiwanese people supported same-sex marriage.

There’s hope Taiwan’s current ruling party, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), will help make it a reality.

DPP leader and current president Tsai Ing-wen supports marriage equality.

President Tsai Ing-wen publicly supports marriage equality
President Tsai Ing-wen publicly supports marriage equality Image: Tsai Ing-wen

‘Last year on Facebook I said: “In love, everyone is equal. I am Tsai Ing-wen, I support marriage equality,”‘ she posted on her Facebook page, Saturday.

‘This year, although my role has changed, my values remain the same.’

She then posted a picture of a rainbow, saying: ‘ Taiwan has rainbow today. Keep on believing.’