The dark surface of Inya Lake is illuminated by warm bobbing candles, pushed out by a small but dedicated crowd who has come in the evening to show their respect. As the lights flicker on the water, yellow balloons are released into the sky and fly gently away, being indicative of freedom and lack of fear. It’s an LGBT crowd who has gathered to show their appreciation for the international Transgender Day of Remembrance, a solemn civil occasion to show respect for those transgender people who have lost their lives over the course of the year – victims of violent hate crimes that occur with alarming regularity across the world. The day is November 20, where in Yangon a few hundred people attended the event to show their solidarity inside Sein Lann Sopyay Park. The event, held each year but with increasing numbers as awareness slowly rises, is specifically dedicated to fighting the hate crime that stalks trans individuals in many parts of the world, including Myanmar.
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