More than 22,000 people gathered in the in the Liberty Bell Park under the event’s banner of “LGBTQ and Religion,” with dozens of roads closed off in preparation for the parade.
A wide range of political parties and NGOs are took part in the parade as well as several Knesset Members, including opposition leader Isaac Herzog and Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid.
This year, hundreds of extra police officers and border guards were deployed to the area after the march was marred by violence in 2015, when 16-year-old participant Shira Banki was murdered by an anti-gay religious extremist. Last year’s Jerusalem Pride march was held in honour of Banki and drew some 30,000 people.
Tel Aviv’s Pride Parade – the biggest in the region – was celebrated in June and attended by over 200,000.
It coincided with the news that a record number of 79% of Israeli Jews support allowing same-sex marriage or civil unions for gay couples, according to a poll commissioned by Israeli NGO Hiddush in the same month.