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Hundreds gather in Taiwan to support gay marriage bill

Published on Sep 7, 2013 8:08 PM
Participants attend a Taiwan-style wedding banquet in front of the Presidential Office in Taipei on September 7, 2013. Hundreds of Taiwanese homosexuals and their family members and friends gathered for the wedding banquet to support the legalisation of same-sex marriage and other gay rights, according to organisers. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

TAIPEI (AFP) - More than 1,200 Taiwanese people joined a mock "wedding banquet" on Saturday aiming to drum up support for a same-sex marriage Bill due to be sent to Parliament soon, organisers said.

Participants sat around tables decorated with red cloths printed with the Chinese character for "wedding", as they had dinner and watched a video recording of local celebrities showing support as well as live performances in a makeshift banquet venue in a square outside the presidential office in Taipei.

"This looks likes a traditional wedding scene and even if it's not real, I think a picture is worth a thousand words and I hope we will get more public attention and support for same-sex marriages," said Mr Richard Chen, a 22-year-old student from Taipei.

The event was aimed at building momentum for a Bill on legalising same-sex marriage and civil partnership drafted by the advocacy group Taiwan Alliance to Promote Civil Partnership Rights, set to be submitted to Parliament when its next session begins in mid-September, the alliance said.

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