Thousands gather in Ukrainian capital for gay pride march

Thousands gather in Ukrainian capital for gay pride march
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Thousands of gay pride supporters held a march in the Ukrainian capital on Sunday despite attempts from opponents to block them. 

The Associated Press reports that about 5,000 people gathered in Kiev for the march and that it lasted approximately 20 minutes.

About 150 members of a far-right group tried to block the route the marchers were taking, according to Agence France-Presse. Multiple protesters threw gas canisters at police, resulting in five officers having to seek medical treatment. Fifty-six protestors were also detained. 


But the march, guarded by some 5,000 officers, including mounted police officers, reportedly carried on with little disruption.

The attendance roughly doubled the turnout from last year's event, according to AFP. Organizers of the event estimated that 6,000 people were on hand, while Ukraine's Interior Ministry said about 2,000 people were in attendance.

Kiev had it first gay pride march in 2016 after the pro-Western government that came to power sanctioned the event. 

Previous marches have ended in violence in the country. In 2015, a gay pride march was stopped after right-wing activists fired smoke grenades at participants.