The Mayor of Reykjavik, Jón Gnarr, a long time advocate of equality, has spoken out online at the protest yesterday in Paris against equal marriage rights for gay couples.

Sharing a link to online coverage of protest, Mr Gnarr posted the simple statement: “Homophobia is not a phobia. They are not scared. They are just a bunch of assholes.”

On Saturday evening, between 70,000 and 100,000 people took to the streets of Paris to protest, as well as demonstrations taking place in the cities of Toulouse, Lyon and Marseille. Protesters carried pink and blue balloons, and rallied under signs saying, “pro-marriage, not ant-gay.”

On 7 November, French President Francois Hollande’s government approved a bill to legalise equal marriage and allow gay couples to adopt.

Yesterday’s protest included members of the Catholic church, as well as other advocates of “traditional” marriage and family rights.

In Reykjavik, there was little opposition to the introduction of equal marriage when in 2010, the parliament unanimously passed legislation to change the law. It is the only country in the world to have introduced equal marriage legislation with no parliamentary opposition.

In August, with just a week to go before the verdict in the Pussy Riot trial, Mr Gnarr donned a pink dress and danced to the band’s music on a float at his city’s gay pride festival.