Celebrating gay pride in Tel Aviv
updated 11:36 AM EDT, Wed June 13, 2012
Partygoers pack the streets during Tel Aviv's annual gay pride parade
- Tens of thousands fill the streets for annual celebration
- German visitor says city is very open-minded
- One activist says celebration can bridge political divide
Tel Aviv, Israel (CNN) -- Tens of thousands of people filled the streets of Tel Aviv on Friday to celebrate at the city's annual gay pride event.
The partygoers started their journey at a community park and walked through several main streets in the heart of the city before holding a large-scale beach party.
The parade in Tel Aviv, known for its vibrant homosexual community, drew tourists from around the globe.
Celebrating gay pride in Tel Aviv
"What I find special about Tel Aviv is that it has a very vibrant gay community, but more than that, I find that the city itself and the people of Tel Aviv are very open-minded towards gay people," said Neil Porter of Berlin. "Wherever we go, we can hold hands, we can kiss, and nobody ever bats an eyelid."
Carrying colorful rainbow flags and dancing to stomping house music, marchers appeared to be entirely unaffected by the hardships of day-to-day regional politics.
"When wars are around and people threatening us, we know that we need to live the second, and this is the second," said Yuval, a local resident.
Some residents of Tel Aviv, who often described it a bubble in the Middle East, believe the they have the power to make a real impact in the lives of many.
After the parade, "Palestinians, Jews, religious or secular, would be able to look at the mirror and say, 'I'm gay, and I feel good about that,' " gay rights activist Dany Zack said.
Part of complete coverage on
updated 10:26 AM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
Advocates say the exam includes unnecessarily invasive and irrelevant procedures -- like a so-called "two finger" test.
updated 7:09 PM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Supplies of food, clothing and fuel are running short in Damascus and people are going hungry as the civil war drags on.
updated 1:01 PM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
Supporters of Richard III want a reconstruction of his head to bring a human aspect to a leader portrayed as a murderous villain.
updated 10:48 AM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Robert Fowler spent 130 days held hostage by the same al Qaeda group that was behind the Algeria massacre. He shares his experience.
updated 12:07 AM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
As "We are the World" plays, a video shows what looks like a nuclear attack on the U.S. Jim Clancy reports on a bizarre video from North Korea.
The relationship is, once again, cold enough to make Obama's much-trumpeted "reset" in Russian-U.S. relations seem thoroughly off the rails.
Ten years on, what do you think the Iraq war has changed in you, and in your country? Send us your thoughts and experiences.
updated 7:15 AM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Musician Daniela Mercury has sold more than 12 million albums worldwide over a career span of nearly 30 years.
Photojournalist Alison Wright travelled the world to capture its many faces in her latest book, "Face to Face: Portraits of the Human Spirit."
updated 7:06 PM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Europol claims 380 soccer matches, including top level ones, were fixed - as the scandal widens, CNN's Dan Rivers looks at how it's done.
updated 7:37 AM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
That galaxy far, far away is apparently bigger than first thought. The "Star Wars" franchise will get two spinoff movies, Disney announced.
updated 2:18 AM EST, Fri February 8, 2013
It's an essential part of any trip, an activity we all take part in. Yet almost none of us are any good at it. Souvenir buying is too often an obligatory slog.