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Taiwan to hold its first gay pride parade


October 20, 2003

TAIPEI — Taiwan homosexuals plan to hold the first Gay Pride Parade on November 1, a gay rights organization said on Friday.

More than 1,000 gays and lesbians from two dozen gay groups plan to take part in the parade in Taipei.

"It will not be a protest, but a symbol of saying good bye to the old days when gays had to live in the shadow of the society," Wu Hsu- liang, spokesman for the Taipei Gay & Lesbian Hotline Association, told a news conference.

Wu said there have been gay pride parades in Japan and Thailand, but not in Taiwan, even though the Taipei City Government has held four Gay Carnivals.

The paraders, holding gay rainbow flags, will march from the Taipei February 28 Park - nicknamed the gay park - to Hsimenting, the commercial centre of Taipei.

"There will be a light atmosphere with songs and dance," Wu said.

The Taipei Gay & Lesbian Hotline Organization has invited gay groups from Asian countries to participate in the Taipei Gay Pride Parade.

In recent years, Taiwan has shown greater acceptance of gays.

Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian recently said that Taiwan plans to legalize marriage between homosexuals as part of its plan to improve its human rights record. –Sapa-DPA


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