NINE LGTBI associations have registered in Torremolinos in recent months, it has been revealed
The development comes after Torremolinos has become a destination for lesbians, gay people, transsexuals, bisexuals and intersex people, something which has been embraced by the current council.
The associations Transhuellas, OjalaEntiendas, Arcoiris Torremolinos, Positive Support Association, Fadisma Malaga, Colegandalus Malaga, Andalusca Diversity, Aepgalma and Acogat have allregistered in Torremolinos, a massive increase from the one LGTBI organisation registered in the town in 2015.
The establishment of a Gay Pride event in June every year, as well as the annual Wonder Beach festival, confirmed Torremolinos’ position as an LGTBI destination, becoming the fifth Spanish municipality after Seville, Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia to join the Paris Declaration, a project aimed at eliminating AIDS by 2030.
The town hall now hangs a rainbow flag from its balcony on international LGTBI day each year and at this year’s Pride event, Maria Jimena Rico and Shaza Ismail, the two girls whose plight being held captive in the Middle East gained international attention this year, led the festivities.
The event, which was also attended by Dana International; the first transsexual winner of Eurovision, celebrates and promotes equality. The girls were chosen to lead the parade because their sexuality “almost cost them their freedom.”
The women, who are 28 and 22, became embroiled in an internationally-covered ordeal after flying to Dubai to visit Shaza’s mother, who was supposedly sick. Once there, however, it became clear Miss Ismail’s Egyptian father wanted her to face trial for her sexuality, which is punishable by death in Dubai.
The couple fled to Georgia, where the man ambushed them and tore up their travel documents. Police intervened and took the girls to the Turkish border, where they crossed over. Turkish police soon intercepted them though, and imprisoned them on suspicion of terrorism without access to legal advice or phones.
The Spanish Government became involved when Ms Rico’s family reported her missing after receiving voicemail saying she feared for her life. The authorities tracked the girls to a prison in Istanbul and quickly secured their release.