Tens of thousands of people flocked to Tel Aviv on Friday for the city's world-famous Gay Pride Parade.
Dancing and waving the gay pride and trans flags, massive crowds poured down the coastal financial hub's Rokach Boulevard starting at noon and moved toward Ganei Yehoshua Park where the LGBTQ+ celebration's main event will be held, featuring a host of concerts of Israel's top performers.
As is customary, the parade was led by giant floats carrying the top DJs of the community's nightlife scene and dancers clad in skimpy and colorful costumes.
"We are here, each and every one of us, to celebrate our colorfulness, to demand our right to security in the public space, to show ourselves and our right to full equal rights in the State of Israel," said Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai as he kicked off the event.
A bevy of politicians also went down to the march to show their support for the LQBTQ+ community.
"Dear friends, we are here, happy and proud to march with power, but there are those who couldn't be here because there are those who are still trying to scare and smear them," Transport Minister Merav Michaeli told the attendants at the march.
"We will not let them; we will simply not let them. The freedom to choose who to love, we will not give it up under any circumstances. Equality means that everyone can be unique in their own way."
Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said that although the LGBTQ+ has made inroads into the Israeli mainstream, there was still a fight to be fought.
"Here lies the true answer," he said. "We are winning because we are the good guys."
Thousands of police officers and ushers were deployed from the morning hours along the procession route to secure the celebrants, maintain public order and manage the traffic arrangements. The police called on the participants to avoid entering Tel Aviv in a private vehicle.
Tel Aviv District Police chief Ami Eshed told Ynet they had not received warnings about any immediate threat to marchers.