Image: Athletes perform during the synchronised swimming competition in the Gay Games at the Maurice Thorez aquatics center in Montreuil near Paris

In Focus

The 10th annual Gay Games descend on Paris

Over 12,700 participants from 91 countries convened in Paris for the 10th Gay Games, which aim to raise awareness about gay and transgender rights.

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Image: People attend the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris

People attend the inauguration of the Gay Games at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris on Aug. 4, 2018.

Athletes from Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Russia were among the thousands of people convening in Paris on Saturday for the opening ceremonies of the 10th Gay Games, which are held every four years since 1982.

Regis Duvignau / Reuters
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Image: A participant poses while attending the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris

A participant strikes a pose in celebration of the beginning of the games on Aug. 4.

Paris welcomed participants from some countries where homosexuality is illegal or repressed.

Fifty-eight athletes are from Russia, which in 2013 passed a law banning “propaganda for non-traditional sexual relations.” One athlete holds a passport from Saudi Arabia, where homosexuality is punishable by death.

Egypt and other Muslim countries — where gays have been arrested and sent to jail — will also be represented in one of the 36 sporting disciplines, spanning from soccer to sailing.

Regis Duvignau / Reuters
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Image: People display a huge rainbow flag as they participate at the international Rainbow Memorial Run during the inauguration of the Gay Games village at the Hotel de Ville city hall in Paris

People carry a huge rainbow flag as they participate in the international Rainbow Memorial Run during the inauguration of the games on Aug. 4.

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Team members celebrate during the opening ceremony of the games at the Jean Bouin Stadium on Aug. 4.

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A member of the Brazilian team marches onto the field during the opening ceremony on Aug. 4.

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Image: Gay games 2018 opening ceremony in Paris

Cheerleaders practice their routine prior to the opening ceremony of the games on Aug. 4.

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Members of the U.S. team march onto the field during the opening ceremony of the games on Aug. 4.

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An athlete gestures to a teammate during the beach volleyball competition on Aug. 5.

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A player from the Philippines swings during the soft ball game on Aug. 5.

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French athlete Olivier Helan Chapel embraces an opponent after the fencing match on Aug. 5.

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Image: Cheerleaders perform during the Gay Games at the Charlety Stadium in Paris

Cheerleaders perform their routine during competition on Aug. 6.

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Image: Cheerleaders perform during the Gay Games at the Charlety Stadium in Paris

Cheerleaders perform during competition on Aug. 6.

The aim of the games, according to the official website, is to combat discrimination, promote the recognition and freedoms of LGBT people and promote information on HIV/AIDS, drug use and other risks.

Regis Duvignau / Reuters
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Image: Cheerleaders perform during the Gay Games at the Charlety Stadium in Paris

Team USA cheerleaders strike a pose during the competition on Aug. 6.

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A pair compete in the dancing contest on Aug. 7.

For the Gay Games dancing competition, duos dance in same-sex pairs instead of the traditional male-female pairing.

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A woman dips her dance partner during the dancing competition on Aug, 7.

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Participants take a break between rounds of the competition on Aug. 7.

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Eccentric costumes with glitter and bright colors sparkle during the dancing competition on Aug. 7.

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A dancing pair competes under the spotlight on Aug. 7.

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Image: Athletes perform during the synchronised swimming competition in the Gay Games at the Maurice Thorez aquatics center in Montreuil near Paris

Synchronized swimmers perform their set on Aug. 8.

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Synchronized swimming participants look on during the competition on Aug. 8.

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Synchronized swimmers perform underwater on Aug. 8.

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Swimmers make a splash during their synchronized routine on Aug. 8.

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A man holds a dozen gold medals during the synchronized swimming competition on Aug. 8.

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The French water polo team, named the Frog and Princess, waits before their match against the Manchester Sharks on Aug. 8.

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Participants wait for results during the synchronized swimming competition on Aug. 8.

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