UNITED KINGDOM — (07-02-22) — PRIDE events both big and small, took place around Europe on Saturday in celebration of LGBTQ rights. From a huge carnival in London that saw attendance reach over one million people to a tiny event in the Arctic village of Inari.
The United Kingdom’s capital marked 50 years of Pride with a vibrant crowd that either took part in or watched the festivities. The huge formation of rainbow flags, glitter and sequins was a sight to see.
After two years of cancellations due to the coronavirus pandemic, the PRIDE parade was back. London had it’s first PRIDE Parade in 1972.
Chris Joell-Deshields, the director of organizers Pride in London, said “momentous” rights and freedoms had been earned since the inaugural event, “but there is more to be done”.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan said that it was a “beautiful day” of “unity, visibility, equality and solidarity” as he celebrated the festivities.
More than 600 LGBTQ groups were expected to take part in the march, which was headed by members of the Gay Liberation Front from the 1972 protest.
Finland’s Prime Minister Sanna Marin joined thousands of people in the capital Helsinki for its annual Pride parade.
Prime Minister Marin told reporters that a new trans rights law would be put before parliament in the autumn session, which would tackle issues like giving 15 year-olds the right to change their gender, and removing finally a requirement for trans people to be sterilized before they can legally change their gender.
Marin, who described growing up in a ‘LGBTQ household’ with her mother and her mother’s partner, has been a patron of Helsinki Pride for several years.
Security concerns were still high after an attack last weekend ahead of Oslo Pride in London that resulted in the death of 2 people and more than 20 injured.
Far-right protesters, some adorned with swastikas, disrupted a drag queen story time event that took place at Helsinki’s Oodi Public Library last Friday.
Article by: Paul Goldberg, Staff Writer
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