Sydney's colourful Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras

Australian politicians announce plans for same-sex marriage laws as hundreds of thousands turn out for gay pride parade.

| Australia, Human Rights, LGBT

Hundreds of thousands of people have lined the streets of Sydney for the annual gay Mardi Gras parade.

About 300,000 people turned out to watch more than 12,000 people march and more than 175 floats take part in the 38th annual parade.

The march kicked off with the "Dykes on Bikes" group revving their motorcycles through the streets.

Revellers dressed in glitter and sequins watched the parade participants who skipped, danced and twirled through the streets.

One float featured a group who marched in Sydney's first Mardi Gras, in 1978. On Friday, New South Wales police formally apologised to them after many were arrested and bashed by officers during the first march.

Other groups included representatives from the Australian navy, Australian Muslims, and organisations supporting people with disabilities.

For the first time, Australian Olympians and Paralympians had their own float, as well as a group from Australia's National Rugby League.

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten became the first leader of a major political party to march, alongside his deputy Tanya Plibersek.

He has promised to skip a plebiscite in Australia on same-sex marriage and introduce a bill to parliament within 100 days if his party wins the federal election.

Conservative Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, who vowed to hold the plebiscite if his government is re-elected later this year, risked a political backlash by becoming the first sitting prime minister to attend the parade.

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