Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has responded to the call to "go purple" on Spirit Day to show solidarity with lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youths who face bullying and discrimination.

The U.N. chief pointed to his purple tie at a press conference Thursday and then picked up his right trouser leg to show off his matching purple sock.

Ban said he almost always wears U.N. blue, but wore an orange tie last year to show support for the U.N.'s campaign to end violence against women.

The secretary-general said "the United Nations will continue to speak out against homophobia - and speak up for the human rights of all LGBT people."