Rio Gay Pride Parade Attended By Over 700,000

10/09/2011 11:43 pm ET | Updated 5 days ago

RIO DE JANEIRO -- Authorities in Brazil say nearly 700,000 people have celebrated in a gay pride parade at Copacabana beach

Many participants waved rainbow flags and wore lavish Carnival costumes as loud music blasted from more than 15 sound trucks in Sunday's festivities.

Gay men, lesbians and cross-dressers danced and cheered to demands that Brazil enact more laws against homophobia in Latin America's biggest nation.

Organizers had hoped for nearly 1.5 million people at the 16th annual parade, but Rio de Janeiro police tell the newspaper the O Globo and other local media that about 700,000 were present.

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