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Tokyo Rainbow Pride parade held in Shibuya to celebrate sexual diversity

Participants of the Tokyo Rainbow Pride parade are seen in Tokyo's Shibuya Ward on April 23, 2023. (Mainichi/Naoaki Hasegawa)

TOKYO -- Members of the LGBTQ community and others celebrated sexual diversity in the Tokyo Rainbow Pride 2023 parade held around Yoyogi Park in the capital's Shibuya Ward on April 23.

    Tokyo Rainbow Pride began in 2012 to aim for a society in which all people can live with self-affirmation regardless of their sexual orientation and gender identity. Participants, some holding rainbow flags, paraded the streets. This year's events consisted of a two-day parade from April 22, as well as live performances by singers and bands in Yoyogi Park.

    Some 10,000 people participated in the parade according to the nonprofit organization that hosted it. Joint representative director Fumino Sugiyama, 41, said, "The fact that rules remain unchanged even though this many people are showing support is making it difficult for the people concerned to lead their lives."

    Sugiyama also reflected on discriminatory remarks against sexual minorities by Prime Minister Fumio Kishida's former secretary in February this year, saying, "LGBTQ issues gathered the greatest attention they have ever received, and it was an opportunity for everyone to think about them." Touching on the Group of Seven (G-7) leaders' summit in May, Sugiyama said, "Japan is the only participating country that has no marriage equality or anti-discrimination law. I want it to push forward change so that it will not disgrace itself to the world as the host country."

    Parades by sexual minorities have been held in Japan since the 1990s.

    (Japanese original by Hiroyuki Tanaka, Digital News Center)

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