By Norm Dixon
LONDON — Central London was brought to standstill for several hours on Saturday, June 27, as a crowd estimated at more than 100,000 joined the EuroPride '92 march for gay and lesbian rights.
Gays and lesbians and their supporters converged on London from all parts of Britain and Europe to join the UK gay and lesbian community's most important annual event.
The lesbian and gay pride celebrations in central London have taken place every June since the mid '70s to mark the 1967 Stonewall "riots" in New York's Greenwich Village.
This year's march is the first to be billed "EuroPride". It marks the beginning of large gay and lesbian festivals in a different European capital each year. Next year's EuroPride will take place in Berlin.
Some activists in the gay and lesbian movement have accused the EuroPride organisers of downplaying political demands in favour of the promotion of "lifestyle" questions. They also suggest that the European theme will sow illusions that moves toward European unity can improve the rights of gays and Lesbians.
However, the organisers counter that EuroPride will encourage closer international dialogue between lesbians and gay organisations. The annual event will put gay and lesbian issues at the top of the political agenda throughout Europe.