A Chinese contestant will take part in the Mr. Gay World pageant to be held in Oslo this weekend despite Beijing’s attempts to prevent him doing so, an organizer has told AFP.
Last month, Beijing police blocked China’s first gay pageant just one hour before the event was to begin, telling the organizers they did not have the proper permit.
Contestants were vying for the right to represent China at Mr. Gay World.
According to The New York Times, a man calling himself Xiaodai Muyi, from the western region of Xinjiang, arrived in Oslo earlier this week to represent China in the international competition, despite the Chinese government’s efforts to derail the process.
The Chinese delegate to Mr. Gay World was supposed to have been the winner of Mr. Gay China — the pageant, originally scheduled for Jan. 15, was never rescheduled after authorities shut down the show.
Yet three of the China event’s organizers and eight pageant participants quietly convened in late January and voted to send one of the contestants to Norway — that turned out to be Muyi, his official pageant, but is also known publicly by his nickname, Xiao Dai, or his English name, Andrew.
Throughout China, sexual orientation is still a delicate matter. Though gay life has become more vibrant, many gay Chinese still stay closeted.
China decriminalized gay sex in 1997, and homosexuality was taken off the list of official psychological disorders in 2001.