Taiwan blames politics for canceling global Pride event | CNN

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Reuters

Taiwan on Friday blamed “political considerations” for the cancellation of WorldPride 2025 Taiwan after it said organizers urged the removal of the word “Taiwan”.

Taiwan participates in global organizations such as the Olympics as “Chinese Taipei”, to avoid political problems with China, which regards the self-governing democratic island as its own territory and opposes anything that suggests it is a separate country.

The southern city of Kaohsiung in Taiwan was set to host WorldPride 2025 Taiwan, after winning the rights from global LGBTQ rights group InterPride.

Last year, after a protest in Taiwan, it dropped a reference to the island as a “region.”

But Kaohsiung’s organizers said InterPride recently “suddenly” asked them to change the event’s name to “Kaohsiung,” removing the word “Taiwan.”

“After careful evaluation, it is believed that if the event goes ahead, it could harm the interests of Taiwan and the Taiwanese gay community. Therefore, it has been decided to terminate the project before the contract is signed,” said the organizers of Kaohsiung.

InterPride said in a statement that they were “surprised to hear the news” and while disappointed, they respected the decision.

“We were convinced that a compromise could have been reached regarding the time-honored WorldPride tradition of using the host city name. We suggested using the name ‘WorldPride Kaohsiung, Taiwan’,” it added.

Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the event would be the first WorldPride event to be held in East Asia.

“Taiwan deeply regrets that, due to political considerations, InterPride unilaterally rejected the mutually agreed-upon consensus and severed a relationship of cooperation and trust, leading to this outcome,” it said.

“The decision not only violates Taiwan’s rights and diligent efforts, but also harms Asia’s vast LGBTIQ+ community and goes against the progressive principles embraced by InterPride.”

Taiwan legalized same-sex marriage in 2019, a first for Asia, and is proud of its reputation as a bastion of LGBTQ rights and liberalism.

While same-sex relationships are not illegal in China, same-sex marriage is, and the government has cracked down on depictions of LGBTQ people in the media and the community’s use of social media.



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