HANOI — LGBT Gay Rights group gathers in repressive Vietnam, calls for further freedoms.
Hundreds of people rode bicycles and motorbikes in Sunday through the streets of Hanoi, Vietnam capital to show support for gay rights and to call for the legalization of same sex marriage.
Participants said they hoped to reduce prejudice and discrimination against the Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community in Vietnam, where Confucian social mores—with their emphasis on tradition and family still dominate according to AFP reports.
“I want society to accept us and I am proud of myself,” said 17-year-old participant Vu Ngoc Anh, a highschool student.”
“I think from last year the social debate has been widespread to different corners of society including policymakers and lawmakers in the National Assembly,” said Le Quang Binh, an analyst with the Hanoi-based Institute for the Studies of Society, Economy and Environment. Video courtesy of Euronews nocommenttv
Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) persons in Vietnam may face legal challenges not experienced by non-LGBT residents. Both male and female same-sex sexual activity is legal and is believed to never have been criminalized in Vietnamese history.
However, same-sex couples and households headed by same-sex couples are ineligible for the legal protections available to opposite-sex couples. Although homosexuality is generally considered a taboo because of the Vietnamese tradition, awareness surrounding LGBT rights has risen during the 21st century.
Vietnam’s first gay pride parade peacefully took place in Hanoi on August 5, 2012. Image/AFP