Tel Aviv hosts largestever gay pride parade in Middle East and Asia
(JNS.org) An estimated 200,000 people participated in Tel Aviv’s annual gay pride parade Friday, including some 30,000 foreign tourists.
This year’s event—which celebrated the theme of “bisexual visibility”—was the 19th gay pride parade held in the seaside Israeli metropolis and, according to the Tel Aviv-Jaffa Municipality, was the largest event of its kind ever held in the Middle East and Asia.
“Tel Aviv Pride Parade is not just a celebration, but also an important declaration of support,” Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai said, adding, “Tel Aviv, which has already been acknowledged as the world’s ‘ most gay-friendly city,’ will continue to be a light-house city, spreading the values of freedom, tolerance and democracy to the world.”
Ahead of this year’s parade, a survey commissioned by the religious pluralism organization Hiddush found that Israeli public support for same-sex marriage is at a record high 79 percent, up from 53 percent in 2009.