An estimated one million people turned
out to celebrate Brazil Gay Pride on Sunday.
Floats blaring music lined Rio de
Janeiro's Avenida Atlantica across from the city's iconic Copacabana
beach, site of the 17th annual carnival-inspired party.
This year's event called for an end to
homophobia in Brazilian society.
Julio Moreira, president of Grupo
Arco-Iris, which organizes the event, told Jornal
do Brasil that violence against LGBT people is on the rise in
community spends most of the year in Brazil hiding, deprived of many
of their rights,” he said.
“I am here to campaign for homophobia
to become a crime under Brazilian law,” Katya Furacao, a school
teacher dressed as Carmen Miranda for the parade, is quoted as saying
by the BBC.
“And to demand equal rights to marriage.”
According to Grupo Gay da Bahia, more
than 266 LGBT people were murdered last year in Brazil, an increase
of 6 over the previous year. Brazil has one of the world's highest
rates of anti-LGBT violence.
“We need to discuss this issue in the
schools and in the National Congress,” Moreira said.