Gay Pride Event Blossoms in Vietnam

Sunday marked the first Gay Pride Parade to grace the streets of Vietnam’s capital, Hanoi. The China Post reports that about 100 LGBT activists paraded through the streets on bicycles and by foot, causing no major disruptions or inciting any intervention by the police. They carried colorful banners and balloons while spreading a hopeful message for LGBT rights.

Last month, Vietnamese Justice Minister Ha Hung Cuong hinted that there may be possible changes to current laws regarding same-sex marriage in the country. Currently, same-sex unions are completely forbidden in Vietnam. After the Justice Minister’s words, organizers may have gotten the boost they needed to take their small group out on the streets and push for more visibility and inclusion. Vietnam has traditionally been a difficult country for the LGBT community. Most people feel uncomfortable displaying their sexuality in a country where being gay can be aligned with caricatures and taboos.

Officials are normally very strict about the types of demonstrations that can be held in the public spaces of Vietnam, according to the China Post. This particular Gay Pride event, although small, did not have official sanction to proceed through the streets of the city, but was strategically planned along a route that would not disrupt certain unsettled areas of Hanoi.

Gay Pride celebrations have been blossoming around the world in recent weeks. As Queerty points out, another march took place this month in Nepal:

Marching as part of this month’s Gaijatra festival on Friday, paradegoers’ demands included marriage equality, anti-discrimination laws and the recognition of a third gender in government-issued certificates.

“The rally gives us an opportunity to seek the support of the public and be more visible in the society. There are more and more people coming out in the open and this rally gives them a chance,” said Sunil Babu Pant, a former member of parliament now working for the rights of sexual minorities with the Blue Diamond Society.

The Nepalese demonstration included around 2,500 demonstrators with colorful costumes, music, floats and people walking by with bright umbrellas and banners. Smiling participants brought their children to the peaceful Pride parade. Queerty notes that Nepal finally agreed to recognize a third gender back in 2008, although that has not guaranteed equal employment opportunities or social inclusion for those with gender identities outside of the two-gender mold.

Many Asian countries present a very specific set of LGBT frustrations and struggles, including a long-term prejudice against gay and lesbian blood donors in China. The expansive Asian country also saw demonstrations against the exclusion of a term for “gay” in an authoritative new dictionary this year.

Hundreds of demonstrators in European countries have also been pushing for LGBT rights. The tiny nation of the Faroe Islands, with a population of 50,000 citizens, also held a Pride demonstration at the end of July. It was one of the first Pride events to take place in nearly five years in the islands and boasted a whopping 5,000 participants.

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Photo Credit: Jordy 91


Samantha Richardson

That's such a lovely thing to read. I'm so glad they had a successful parade, and managed to get visibility in Vietnam. Hopefully this means they will get more vocal supporters :)

Thank you for also sharing about Nepal and Faroe Islands. It's really heartwarming to hear that these places are holding such awesome Pride events!

Leia P.
Leia P.5 years ago


Deniz Z.
Deniz Z.5 years ago

Dear Sarah, i hope you did a mistake. You wouldnt put that picture purposely.. Because It is Taxim Square ISTANBUL

Ismail A.
Ismail A.5 years ago

This photo is from the LGBT parade in İstanbul in June 2012. I know there is "one east" from the eyes of westerners but it's not actually! You should be a bit careful while linking the news and photo for avoiding to mislead your readers.

Prentise Wylie
pre,tpse w5 years ago

Well, these crowds of homosexuals and their supporters must be absolute proof of the evil un-naturalness of their being -- after all, if god had wanted them, he/she would have made them
so prolific that they are all over the world... oh, yeah -- he/she did.

Rose Becke5 years ago

:) Great

Christine VanderWal
Christine V5 years ago


John B.
John B5 years ago

Great news for the LBGTQ comminity there. Thanks Sarah for providing the good news.

paola ballanti
Paola Ballanti5 years ago

Trovo DOVEROSO non discriminare la gente per le sue scelte e preferenze in fatto di sentimenti e spiritualità, ma queste manifestazioni non mi piacciono per niente: gli omosessuali sono persone come tutte le altre e possono dimostrarlo anche evitando queste carnevalate.

Abbe A.
Azaima A5 years ago