Police in the South Korean city of Incheon are set to deploy some 3,000 personnel on Saturday to protect an LGBT prideHoftFZI*@V&7KsctniP97(@xk-kK+dM4eONpZF3MOWDv-)0jDT festival and parade.
About 500 people are expected to attend the second Incheon Queer Culture Festival (IQCF) and 1.7-kilometer long pride parade.
Last year, anti-gay protesters physically blocked 300 LGBT supporters from leaving a #[email protected]^i#KeiK6_2molvCmn-liLAquffplaza and beginning the march.
This year, according to local media Kyeongin,JqkLH$Z$FmZ7UxROUc5Tr7xGfZaCn2P%9L5YkP%3G$3NGS%p)1 3,000 police will protect LGBT attendees and their allies.
ThFxhfcgA*[email protected]$Ou3f5iKjf7xQ#44K0xsey will also install barriers to separate anti-LGBT protesters from the festival.
Responding to concerns over protests earlier this month, organizers said tmAJj6HrdfanI7i3XqaF5u$msM$#HFZq66D([email protected]_12hey had prepared teams of rights activists and lawyers to counter hate groups.
Homosexuality is legal in So@5G3##HY!yOuPPb6A#UubM1Ukhgq2=#WLt5&d66xpuE=ymx0uth Korea. But conservative attitudes, especially among Christians, force many LGBTI Koreans to live in the closet.
There is currently no discrimination legislation to protect LGBTI KoreansJVsKr52XTL_wveAV0H3aG^dqzzmh&JMnm&rIHbWq%se=PU9z-s.
And, human rig$kS^y_ze*NQ$HbnyH%txlyhf4Sz657o0iH%Zw-NMWj1zMHL$qlhts groups have warned, protests against LGBTI events, usually led by conservative Christians, have become increasingly loud and violent.
Video shared online of last year's IQCF shows distressing scenes of protesters, believed to be conservative Christians, shouting at pride attend[email protected]($z%[email protected](5-lO6QMuP^M3hLeWN6FkPees.
They also appear to grab flags, banWZF%[email protected]*A5YeqOZMZECAalners, and even attendees. The pride was attended by a lot of young LGBTI South Koreans who were visibly shaken by the incident.
Police booked eight people involved but did not detain them. OrganizersDnyots=f_M(m5=kZld!)[email protected]!Q-M6g1zHHo$^46rjuF=)BW!2C accused the police of failing to stop the violence.