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Celebrations for the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia will continue over the week end.
This week has already been marked by an unprecedented level of events, most of them successful, in over 100 countries.
But violence, intimidation and pressure has also marked the mobilization worldwide, from Kenya to Georgia.
We reflect on a fantastic mobilization, across all world regions, in over 100 countries with  one unanimous cry : we shall not be silenced !
Mobilisation was definitely too broad and diverse to give coverage to.
Each action, from gigantic to individual, has had its own significance and each of them is one note in the symphony for human rights which the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia constitutes.
High level support was once more part of the celebrations, with a special mention for Queen Màxima of the Netherlands who showed the extend of her commitment to the cause by offering the IDAHO International Conference in The Hague her first public event participation of her Reign ! The Day was also saluted by many heads of States, Ministers, Governors, Mayors and other officials.
United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon also issued a moving declaration, as he stated that “for far too long, the suffering of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in all regions, was met with silence in the halls of power. As Secretary-General, I am committed to raising my voice.”
All over the world, activists flooded the streets with ‘Rainbow Flashmobs’,
At the ‘other end’ of the spectrum, in some places like Burkina Faso, Senegal, Malaysia, Algeria, Iran, Bangladesh, Pakistan and others, the Day has provided the opportunity for unique moments of exposure to the issue of the rights of sexual and gender minorities. Sometimes, like in Somalia, it was for the first time in the History of the country that this issue was discussed publicly at all.
But violence once more marked the celebrations, as they do every year. The probably worst reports came fromGeorgia, where a crowd of several hundred people attacked peaceful demonstrators. Shocking images showpriests leading the attacks. Thankfully in other places like Washington Cathedral, progressive religious voicesreminded of the potential contribution of all religions to a peaceful and inclusive world.
Demonstrations were interrupted by police forces in Kenya. Opponents attacked the peaceful ‘Rainbow Flahmob’ in Saint PetersburgPolice detained activists in China.
The IDAHO Committee’s reporting of events suffered a blow as hackers paralysed the site
Still, visibility of sexual and gender minorities has reached unprecedented proportions this year, withextensive media coverage from all parts. And on social media, millions of people have read, posted, tweeted, shared and liked, sending a ‘pink’ glow across the web with a strength that must have been visible from outer space!
And visibility is at the heart of our struggle. At the end of the day, maybe even opponents help our cause by showing to the world that we exist, that we fight for our rights, and that we have a human face and a human voice !
Public opinions have seen incredibly fast shifts on the issue of Human rights for sexual and gender minorities. Even on controversial issues such as same-sex marriage, activists have managed to win support from a majority of the public in the USA, the UK, France, Spain, Portugal, and many countries in Latin America.
These evolutions show that change is not only possible, but also possibly fast!
But for people to start reflecting on the issue of human rights for sexual and gender minorities, they first need to lend them a human face, a human voice.
Throughout the Day, these faces and voices have been seen and heard by millions and millions of people, through online and offline media, thanks to the mobilization of thousands of activists, journalists, officials, and committed individuals.
A wonderful quote came to us from Ukraine : The International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia is one Day in a year that changes the other 364 !

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