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Big Crowd Turns Out for Colorful Gay Pride Parade in Rio

Tens of thousands of people celebrated at Rio de Janeiro's annual gay pride parade at Copacabana beach.

Revellers take part in the 21st Rio LGBT pride parade at Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on December 11, 2016.Yasuyoshi Chiba / AFP - Getty Images

RIO DE JANEIRO — Tens of thousands of people have celebrated at Rio de Janeiro's annual gay pride parade at Copacabana beach.

 Revellers take part in the 21st Rio LGBT pride parade at Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on December 11, 2016. Yasuyoshi Chiba / AFP - Getty Images

Under a blazing sun, revelers wearing feathery costumes and wigs held up rainbow flags and danced along the promenade Sunday as music blasted from a half dozen sound trucks.

Organizers said this year's parade was focusing on passing legislation in Brazil that would allow adults to legally change their gender on identity documents and eliminate bureaucracy involved in sex reassignment surgery.

The event saw periodic scuffles as police chased thieves who targeted the large crowd to steal golden chains and cellphones. At one point beachgoers watching the parade grabbed one suspect and beat him.

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