Tuesday, June 12, 2007


SAO PAULO (Reuters) - An estimated 3 million gays, lesbians and transvestites paraded down the main avenue of Brazil's business capital Sao Paulo on Sunday, showing their pride in a blaze of colour and festive music.


"We want people to address machismo, racism and homophobia ... which still exists in Brazil," Nelson Matias Pereira, president of the parade told the official news agency Agencia Brasil, adding that many families took part.

The Sao Paulo Gays, Lesbians, Bisexuals and Transvestites (GLBT) Parade Association said balmy temperatures of 25 degrees Celsius (77 Fahrenheit) helped draw more than last year's 2.5 million marchers and that the turnout would be a world record.

A police estimate was unavailable, but nearly 900 officers were on duty to help maintain order.

On a five-day visit to Brazil, the world's most populous Catholic country, Pope Benedict attracted less than 1 million to listen to his calls to reinforce traditional family values.

During Sunday's parade, bands played on 23 "trios eletricos," or huge trucks, with their music blasted from massive loudspeakers.

For their 11th parade, the gays received official backing for the first time.

Brazil's ministers for Tourism and Sport, Marta Suplicy and Orlando Silva, attended the parade. The governor of Sao Paulo state, Jose Serra, and city mayor Gilberto Kassab were also there.

Sponsors included Brazil's state energy company Petrobras and the state-owned Caixa Economica Federal bank.


RIC said...

Three million people! Lord! I just cannot imagine such a huge figure!
Brazil is great!
For├ža Brasil!!! :-D
Hugs! :-)

leone said...

Now that's just gone on the 'must visit one day' list!!