Seoul hosts LGBT festival, U.S. envoy shows support

STORY: Wearing rainbow masks and waving flags, participants browsed some 72 booths set up by human rights groups, university LGBT clubs, embassies, religious and progressive organizations, taking part in face painting or social media events. Local media reported around 13,000 people had participated in the Seoul Queer Culture Festival by the afternoon.

"We're going to fight with you for equality and human rights," Philip Goldberg, the U.S. ambassador to South Korea, told the participants.

“South Korea has yet to legalize same-sex marriage and has not enacted laws against discrimination, so this is the most urgent part," said queer culture participant Yang Cheal-woong. "I think only when they are enacted can we meet important criteria and follow the path of advanced countries such as the United States.”

Across the road from the festival taking place in Seoul Plaza in front of City Hall, protesters held a rally gathering at least 15,000 people, according to the Yonhap news agency. They said they felt obliged to protect "healthy sexual ethics for children" and condemned the ambassador for participating.

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