Friday, 24 July 2015 - 13:07
Masked asylum seekers to join Amsterdam Gay Pride parade
A number of asylum seekers will take part in the Amsterdam Gay Pride parade, but wearing masks because they are still to afraid to show their faces. Illias Mahtab, initiator of the refugee boat in the parade, says this shows how harrowing the problem still is, AT5 reports. "This is what Gay Pride is all about for us. Gay Pride is about human rights, standing up for one of the most vulnerable groups in the Netherlands", Mahtab said to AT5. "There are masks for people who do not dare. A large group of these people do not dare. They want to be on the boat and support the initiative, but still do not dare to show their faces." A large number of refugees flee their home countries because they are gay and homosexuality is not tolerated in their country. Ugandan refugees Rhona and Fred separately came to the Netherlands in 2013, and only came out of the closet after they arrived. "I think it's a good opportunity for all refugees in the country, because it would otherwise remain hidden. And to send a message to our homeland saying that we, despite this situation, are safe and happy here."