The Mexican capital has witnessed one of its largest protests over the recent years, with thousands taking to the streets to denounce same-sex marriage.
More than 200,000 people are estimated to have joined the Saturday rally in Mexico
City, organized by the National Front for the Family coalition of religious groups, AFP reported.
Last year, the country’s Supreme Court ruled that a standing ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional.
President Pena Nieto has been pushing to make such a marriage legal nationwide and has proposed a relevant constitutional reform. Currently, it is legal only in some places such as Mexico City and two states.
The protesters also voiced opposition to a right given to same-sex couples to adopt children.
Some carried banners reading, “An adopted child deserves a mother and a father.” Others said parents should be allowed to oppose homosexuality education at schools.
They accused the government of “trying to impose gender ideology in education,” with a female protester saying, “I think the government… wants to keep us from raising our children the way we want.”
Members of the National Front for the Family religious coalition march in Mexico’s capital of Mexico City on September 24, 2016 to protest President Enrique Pena Nieto’s initiative to legalize gay marriage. (Photo by AFP)
The march took place alongside the Mexican capital’s iconic Paseo de la Reforma Avenue.
Though considerably smaller in size, a pro-gay marriage demonstration was simultaneously taking place nearby.
“They may be the majority,” said a participant in the counter-rally. “But just because they are the majority, doesn’t mean they can take rights away from minorities.”
Observers say Nieto’s support for same-sex marriage was among the main reasons that led to his party’s unprecedented losses in the June elections.
Earlier this month, another thousands-strong march was held throughout the capital in favor of the president’s resignation.
Nieto is also under fire for his handling of drug violence as well as corruption in Mexico’s state institutions. He has also faced widespread criticism for a recent meeting with US Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump.