Paris rainbow crossing vandalised for the second time in three days
A rainbow crossing installed in Paris ahead of this weekend’s Pride celebrations has been vandalised for the second time this week.
Paris Pride, known as the Marche des Fiertés LGBT, is set to take place on June 30 this year – and will be subject to high security which has been stepped up in recent years.
On June 25, rainbow decorations in the city were targeted by vandals, who covered them with white paint and scrawled homophobic messages including “LGBT get out of France.”
— Les Coqs Festifs (@lescoqsfestifs) 26 June 2018
The vandalism was promptly cleaned up and widely condemned, including by Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo.
However, on the night of June 28, the walkways were vandalised again, this time with the phrase “dictature LGBT” – LGBT dictatorship – sprayed across the rainbow in black paint.
The unidentified vandals also wrote “Hidalgo dégage” on the crossing, which translates to “Hidalgo get out”, in a direct message to the mayor.
2e fois que les passages piétons pr la #MarcheDesFiertés ont été dégradés. Ces tags homophobes sont à l’image de toutes les discriminations et des violences que subissent les LGBTQI partout en France et dans le monde : nous les combattrons sans relâche ✊
(photo @theandrewgrey) pic.twitter.com/sjnai64m2H
— David Belliard (@david_belliard) 29 June 2018
One Paris resident posted photos of the vandalised crossings to Twitter, adding: “These homophobic tags are a reflection of all the discrimination and violence faced by LGBTQIs everywhere in France and in the world, we will fight them relentlessly.”
Mayor Hidalgo responded on Friday morning, posting on Twitter: “Last night the rainbow crosswalk in Marais has been vandalized again. This act of homophobia won’t go unpunished.
“The Prosecutor of the Republic will be seized. The municipal agents will clean up this morning.”
As of Friday afternoon, a cleanup effort was underway. Mayor Hidalgo posted a video to Twitter of the rainbow crossing being jetwashed.
— Anne Hidalgo (@Anne_Hidalgo) 29 June 2018
Hidalgo added: “Thanks to the agents of the City of Paris, already on the ground to once again clean the rainbow pedestrian crossings of the Marais.”
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Many prominent LGBT people and allies have condemned the repeated vandalism.
Following the first incident, openly gay Deputy Mayor Bruno Julliard said: “The homophobic degradation of our city’s rainbow decorations is unacceptable.
“This new manifestation of hideous hatred will only strengthen our determination to fight against discrimination without fail.”
Out politician Jean-Luc Romero added: “Anti-LGBTQI hatred struck at the heart of Paris. Our answer is Saturday, when hundreds of thousands of people will parade for the Pride Walk!”
Mayor Hidalgo has stated that more rainbow crossings will be added around Paris following the crimes.
This move has been welcomed by many in Paris’ LGBT community, with one person writing: “After this vandalism, I expect Hidalgo to repaint all pedestrian crossings in Paris the colours of the rainbow.”