In photos: Medellín’s 22nd Pride March

By July 3, 2019
Medellin Gay Pride Drag Queen
A drag queen leads a crowd of Pride flag-bearers. (Frances Jenner)

Yesterday, June 30, 75,000 people took to the streets in Medellín to celebrate the pride of the city’s LGBTQI+ community, according to Antioquia’s LGBTI Social Alliance. This marks an increase of 28,000 in comparison to the organization’s headcount from the previous year. The 22nd edition of the march also coincided with the 50-year anniversary of the Stonewall riots, a series of violent demonstrations in the United States involving the LGBTQI+ community, from which many gay rights foundations were born.

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual, queer, intersex and further identities, along with the heterosexual community, seized the opportunity to protest against discrimination and LGBTQI-phobic violence. This year marked a particularly poignant opportunity to march after a man, identified as Luis Emilio Arboleda, took down the Pride flag from its hoist in Medellín’s Cerrro Nutibara and destroyed it, the day before the parade was due to take place.

At Medellin Gay Pride a man holds a sign.
One man holds a sign saying “They took down our flag, but not our pride.” He refers to the Pride flag that was cut down and destroyed days before the march. Photo by Frances Jenner.
Bar Chiquita Gay Pride Float Medellin
Chiquita Bar had its own colorful float with the hashtag #CualEsTuMaricada, which loosely translates to “What the hell is wrong with you?” Photo by Sophie Foggin.
Medellin Gay Pride Parade Flag Dancers
Groups of dancers waved flags at the beginning of the parade accompanied by marching bands. (Frances Jenner)

Read more: How progressive is LGBTQ rights legislation in Latin America?

Medellin Gay Pride March
Tens of thousands of people attended the event, flanking parade floats playing dance music. (Sophie Foggin)
Medellin Gay Pride Parade Signs
A woman holds a sign which reads, “To the paramilitaries, hypocrites and fascists in Antioquia, here we are, your proudly gay children.” A sign behind says “Loving shouldn’t cost our lives.” (Frances Jenner)
Transsexual  people protest Medellin Gay Pride
Members of the trans community are chained up as a man holds a sign reading “Transphobia is an illness – cure yourself!” (Frances Jenner)
Medellin Gay Pride Uribe Morales
Parade-goers carry signs with the faces of Álvaro Uribe and Viviane Morales, politicians who have both spoken out against homosexuality. (Frances Jenner)

Additional reporting by Frances Jenner.