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Less talk, more action: Tokyo Rainbow Pride's call to arms

Defiant marchers express dismay over lack of progress on LGBT rights

Members of the LGBT community and supporters march in Tokyo's Shibuya district during the Tokyo Rainbow Pride parade on April 24. (Photo by Ken Kobayashi)

TOKYO -- Perspex heels, rainbow flags and psychedelic face masks. Yoyogi Park was abuzz with color and music over the weekend as revelers and campaigners braved unseasonably hot weather -- and spring rain -- to attend the first in-person Tokyo Rainbow Pride (TRP) festival since 2019.

After the event drew around 1.6 million online attendees last year -- the largest number since it began in 1994 -- TRP co-chair Natsumi Yamada said that holding the event online during the pandemic helped organizers reach more people, but is nothing compared to connecting in person.

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