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Hundreds of people march holding hands, after gay couple attacked for holding hands

Nick Duffy April 7, 2017

Hundreds of people held hands at a protest in Amsterdam, after a violent attack on a gay couple.

Gay couple Jasper Vernes-Sewratan and Ronnie Sewratan-Vernes were set upon by a group of thugs last weekend, while returning home from a night out.

The attackers screamed homophobic abuse before launching a violent attack on the couple that hospitalised the both. A 14-year-old boy was among the men arrested over the attack.

Following the shocking violent incident, politicians in the country showed solidarity by holding hands in public.

A number of senior figures joined in, including Deputy Prime Minister Lodewijk Asscher and Democrats 66 leader Alexander Pechtold.

Following the campaign, a protest was held in Amsterdam last night, with hundreds of people holding hands.

One of the attendees, Sjag Kozak, told Euronews that he had lived in Amsterdam with his husband for 21 years.

He said: “I find it really absurd, unbelievable and this is feeling like we are going backwards, so that’s why we’re here: To make a statement to let people know that we are moving forward and not going backwards.”

Marion Van Hees added: “In the 60s, I stood on the barricades for freedom, and this is what has become of it. Now we’ve got to do it again, and I thought we had finished, that we had achieved it. But that’s clearly not the case.

“And I think that’s very sad. So I’m going back to the barricades again.”

The King of the Netherlands recently made a historic visit to a Dutch LGBT rights group.

King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands, who ascended to the throne in 2013, met with activists from COC Netherlands, a Dutch advocacy group for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

The visit, thought to be the first time the acting monarch has made a visit to an LGBT group, came as COC celebrated its 70th anniversary.

His wife, Queen Máxima has attended LGBT rights conference in the past.

The Netherlands has long been a progressive beacon, becoming the first country in the world to legalise same-sex marriage in 2001.

More: Dutch, Europe, Gay, homophobic, LGBT, Netherlands, The Netherlands

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