Foreign envoys join LGBT pride parade in Taipei

Taipei,  Members of the international community, including foreign envoys, participated in the 2020 Taiwan LGBT Pride Parade on Saturday to express their support for LGBT rights.

Head of the European Economic and Trade Office (EETO) Filip Grzegorzewski, head of the British Office Taipei Catherine Nettleton and political section chief of the French Office in Taipei Pierre Goulange were among those who attended.

According to EETO, top envoys and high-level diplomats from Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Slovakia, Spain and Sweden, as well as Canada, Australia and New Zealand, also participated in the annual parade.

Australian deputy representative to Taiwan Michael Googan, who himself has a same-sex spouse, told CNA that the Australian Office was excited to join the thousands of other marchers at the event and wished everyone well.

The Australian Office in Taipei gave away free face masks printed with rainbow-colored kangaroos and rainbow flags to the participants in the parade, which included more than 130,000 people.

In a Facebook post, EETO lauded Taiwan as “a leader for LGBTI rights in Asia.”

“Today, the EU and its member states join Taiwan in celebrating diversity and the freedom to be whoever we want to be,” it said in the post, which enclosed a group photo of the foreign envoys who participated in the march.

It added that the EU and Taiwan have been working hand in hand to promote human rights, citing the EU-Taiwan Gender Equality Cooperation and Training Framework 2019-2022 as an example.

Nettleton said in a statement to CNA that she and her colleagues were happy to participate in the Pride Parade again this year, a year after the same-sex marriage law came into effect in Taiwan.

“Encouraging equality and not discriminating against people is the basis of a fair and happy society. Creating that society is something all of us can play our part in,” she said.

“I hope that, through the parade, year after year, we can pass on the message that everyone has the right to love and everyone has the right to be treated equally. The British Office Taipei stands for that,” she said.

The French Office in Taipei on its Facebook page described the parade as the “largest in the world” this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions in most other parts of the world.

“More than ever, France is committed alongside its partners, civil society, human rights defenders and all those who, by the power of their convictions, have made the inclusion of LGBTI people a daily struggle,” it said.

Meanwhile, the Netherlands Office Taipei noted on its Facebook page that the Netherlands in 1994 became the first country to legalize same-sex marriage.

The 2020 Taiwan LGBT Pride Parade took place in Xinyi District, Taipei. According to the organizers, around 130,000 people participated in the event this year.

 

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel

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