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In Venezuela, gays and lesbians demand equal rights

CARACAS, Venezuela -- Dozens of gays and lesbians marched Saturday in the capital city and demanded an end to discrimination against the LGBT community and for civil rights, including marriage equality.

Article 77 defines marriage as between one man and one woman.

Venezuela approved discrimination protections in 1999, but later rescinded the law after enormous pressure from the dominant faith, the Roman Catholic Church. Gays and lesbians can serve in the military and same-gender sex is legal in the country, but other civil rights are denied.

Although Caracas has a thriving LGBT community, many areas of the capital and across Venezuela are dangerous for gays and lesbians to be out. Police harassment and homophobia thrive in many parts of the country, according to Wikipedia.

To read more about LGBT rights in Venezuela, click HERE.

Elsewhere in South America, Argentina approved marriage equality in 2010, Brazil effectively followed last week with a legal ruling, and Uruguay's marriage-equality law will go into effect on Aug. 1, 2013.