The fifth Irish March for Marriage is due to take place in Dublin city centre on this coming Sunday afternoon. Last year saw thousands gather for what was described as a lively and colourful demonstration calling for the Irish Republic to introduce marriage equality.

Earlier this year, 79 out of 100 members of the Irish Constitutional Convention voted in favour of changing the Irish Constitution to allow for same-sex marriage. The Convention’s strong endorsement of equal marriage rights in Ireland marked a historic stage for the campaign to achieve full marriage equality in the Irish Republic.

Organised by Irish gay rights group LGBT Noise, one of the march’s key aims this year will be to ensure the Irish Government remains committed to responding to the recommendations of the Constitutional Convention within the required four months of the publication of its reports, in this case by November 1st 2013. The organisers of this year’s march have also stated that LGBT Noise will place the issue of marriage equality within the context of broader LGBT rights both domestically and internationally.

Speaking to PinkNews.co.uk, LGBT Noises’ Max Krzyzanowski said: “The annual March for marriage, has taken on an urgent character, as we watch while the Russian Federation strips its citizens of the right to protest for any degree of LGBT equality. The horror felt at this legislation is amplified by credible reports of vigilante violence towards individuals perceived to be gay, and the escalation of calls within Russia for further marginalisation of, and discrimination against LGBT.

“There will be a stand where marchers may sign to demand that Ireland’s Deputy Prime minister, who is also minister for foreign affairs, use all channels available to him to denounce Russia’s dangerous (and illegal under international treaties) persecution of LGBT people.”

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“Ireland is expected to face a referendum on the question of marriage equality within the next 18 months. It is sobering to consider that while we fight to achieve this milestone of equal recognition for same sex couples, our counterparts in Russia and elsewhere in the world face criminal sanction, indeed they risk their lives and liberty to advocate for the self-same recognition.”

Last week Irish youth groups handed a letter of concern to the Russian Ambassador, in order to protest against the treatment of LGBT young people in the country.

The march for marriage is taking place at 3pm, City Hall, Dublin on the 18 August and is set to see even more in attendance than previous years. Information and updates are available at the event’s Facebook page.