Two women say they were attacked while holding pro-LGBT+ signs near an anti-LGBT+ protest in France.
The lesbian activists said they are now filing a criminal complaint.
The anti-LGBT+ organisation Le Manif Pour Tous (“Protest for All”, LMPT) held demonstrations across France in protest of a proposed law which could legalise fertility treatments for lesbian couples and single women.
The two lesbian activists told Ouest-France they approached an LMPT demonstration on 9 January in Angers, western France. The pair decided to counter-protest, holding signs that read “Lesbians can be mothers without fathers” and “It takes more than heterosexuality to be a good parent”.
They said two men, who appeared to be with LMPT, blocked them in the street. The men asked where the women were going. When the women said they were going to the rally, the men allegedly became violent.
‘People passing by didn’t even react’
“While running, one of them pushed us with his shoulders,” one of the women said. “They told us that they wouldn’t let us pass.”
“He pushed me and took my sign,” said the other woman. “I lifted my arm to try to grab it back, and he pushed me violently. Adèle started screaming that two women were being attacked in the middle of the street, but the people who were passing by didn’t even react.”
One of the women said, at this moment, one of the men “tore the sign, took my left arm and held me in an arm-lock with my arm behind my back. Then, I heard it crack.”
The men then released them and ran away.
One of the victims said: “They told us that we shouldn’t exist.”
Security intervened, asking the women to leave. The women have now decided to file a complaint about the assault with the public prosecutor.
Pie-Louis Lécluse, departmental coordinator of LMPT, told French LGBT+ website TETU that the men were not part of their organisation. He argued the men were with a local white national group, which he said was “following the protest, but wasn’t part of the protest”.
Lécluse said: “These two people [the lesbian activists] were not violent. I told them I found this attack outrageous.”
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