Great expectations in Madrid as World Pride starts

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WORLD PRIDE kicks off this weekend in Madrid, marking the fortieth anniversary Spain’s first LGBTQ protest in 1977.

Madrid will welcome the world to gay neighbourhood Chueca with open-air concerts, parties, arts, culture and games.

The event kicks off at 6pm with a parade from Atocha to Colon under the banner “whoever you love, Madrid loves you.”

From high-heeled races to short film screenings, World Pride offers a program as diverse as the flag it flies under.

After more than 2.5 million people attended Madrid’s World Pride in 2007, officials have estimated that this year’s event will mark the largest parade ever held in the capital.

“We’ve never held a World Pride festival that has had as much institutional support,” said Juan Carlos Alonso, the event’s coordinator.

He continued to say that the event organisers want this year’s pride march to be remembered as the biggest in history, and has dedicated it to the victims of discrimination in countries where LGBTQ people live in fear of punishment or even death.

“We speak up for all those in Russia who cannot speak for themselves,” read event flyers.

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