Uganda celebrates gay pride, this time with police protection

The parade and rally came with police protection, a contrast to a rally two years ago.
By Ed Adamczyk  |  Aug. 11, 2014 at 1:49 PM
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ENTEBBE , Uganda, Aug. 11 (UPI) -- Uganda's gay pride parade and rally, following the repeal of an anti-homosexuality law, was celebrated with police protection -- a contrast with a similar rally broken up by police two years ago.

Hundreds of celebrants arrived in chartered buses to attend the festivities in Entebbe's Botanical Gardens. Organizers worked closely with police, who assured marchers they would be protected from harassment.

The weekend event came two weeks after Uganda's Constitutional Court struck down a law sentencing "proven homosexuals" to possible life terms. The legislation was criticized globally, and several countries reduced humanitarian and developmental aid to Uganda as a result.

Despite the repeal, some Ugandan lawmakers said they intend to re-introduce the bill, still with harsh penalties, in Parliament later this year.

Emotional marchers, many wearing masks, marched and chanted in the streets. Organizer Shawn Mugisha said, "I think it's really exciting, because this is happening after what happened in court. And security-wise, I think we're very safe because police (are) aware we're here."

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