France: Scuffles with police ensue as 300,000 march against marriage equality
Hundreds of thousands of marchers took to the streets of Paris today to protest against the likely legalisation of same-sex marriage, with scuffles breaking out after crowds tried to take an unauthorised route on the Champs Elysees.
The London event attracted an estimated 2000 protesters and counter-protesters, dwarfed by police estimates of 300,000 protesters at the Paris march. Manif Pour Tous said that the figure was even higher, claiming 1.2 million were present.
Some marchers chanted for French President Francois Hollande to resign. Banners at the march read “We want work not gay marriage,” and “No to gayxtremism”.
“We want the president to deal with the economy and leave the family alone,” said Virginie Tellenne, one of France’s anti-marriage equality figureheads, who often goes by the name Frigide Bardot (‘Frigid Loony’).
Around one to two hundred of the marchers attempted to defy the ban and break through police to reach the Champs Elysees. Police used tear gas on crowds in an attempt to hold them back, but some managed to reach the road.
According to police two protesters were arrested. No injuries were reported.
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