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Over 50,000 people are thought to have taken part. Photo: LEIF R JANSSON / SCANPIX
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Over 600,000 people are thought to have watched the parade. Photo: LEIF R JANSSON / SCANPIX
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The shadow of new Russian laws against "gay propaganda" lay over the celebrations in Stockholm. Photo: LEIF R JANSSON / SCANPIX
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Green Party spokesperson Gustav Fridolin was one of the parade participants. Photo: LEIF R JANSSON / SCANPIX
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Rainbow flags filled the streets. Photo: LEIF R JANSSON / SCANPIX

Pride Parade takes over central Stockholm

Over half a million Stockholmers are thought to have taken the streets Saturday to watch the annual Pride Parade make its way through the city. Over 50 thousand people are thought to have taken part in the biggest annual demonstration in Sweden.

The march took several hours, and Swedish celebrities, politicians and government ministers took part, all supporting HBTQ rights in Sweden and around the world. Among those walking through a scorching Stockholm was Finance Minister Anders Borg, EU minister Birgitta Ohlsson and Integration/LGBT minister Erik Ullenhag, as well as commander-in-chief of the Swedish armed forces, Sverker Göranson.

The path of the parade has been changed this year, it started at 1pm at Medborgarplatsen on Södermalm, before crossing Slussen and going onto Gamla Stan. It then continued to Kungsträdgården before swinging left to Sergels Torg, then back round to Kungsgatan, before heading back north along Sturegatan to Pride Park.

Protesters with banners unhappy about police representatives taking part in the parade were removed by on-duty police when they tried to disturb the pride march, newspaper Svenska Dagbladet reports, with witnesses claiming pepper spray was used against the demonstrators, who had joined the parade unannounced.

Many bus lines in central Stockholm were cancelled for the day to accommodate the marchers.

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