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Paris hosts Gay Games amid surge in anti-gay aggression in the country

Updated : 2018-08-06 11:40:05

Athletes from Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Russia were among the thousands of people convening in Paris on Saturday for the opening ceremonies of the 10th Gay Games, which aim to raise awareness about gayand transgender rights.

Over 12,700 participants from 91 countries are expected during the Aug. 4-12 contest, which presents a variety of athletes - young and old, male and female, straight and gay.

France itself has been grappling with a recent surge in anti-gay acts as it eyes legalizing assisted reproduction forgay women in 2019 -- a campaign promise by centrist French President Emmanuel Macron.

A long rainbow flag is displayed on the facade of Hotel de ville city Hall during the inauguration of the Gay Games village in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
A long rainbow flag is displayed on the facade of Hotel de ville city Hall during the inauguration of the Gay Games village in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
A participant holds rainbow flags at the international Rainbow Memorial Run during the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
A participant holds rainbow flags at the international Rainbow Memorial Run during the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
People attend the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
People attend the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
People display a huge rainbow flag as they participate at the international Rainbow Memorial Run during the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
People display a huge rainbow flag as they participate at the international Rainbow Memorial Run during the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
People react as they attend the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
People react as they attend the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
A participant poses while attending the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
A participant poses while attending the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
A man displays a banner as he participates at the international Rainbow Memorial Run during the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
A man displays a banner as he participates at the international Rainbow Memorial Run during the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
People sign a flag as they participate at the international Rainbow Memorial Run during the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
People sign a flag as they participate at the international Rainbow Memorial Run during the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
People pose as they attend the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
People pose as they attend the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris, France, August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
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