Homosexuals targeted as part of growing wave of violent protest against bill allowing marriage for all.

In France, there's concern that the fierce debate over a new law introducing gay marriage is spilling over into violence.

The French Senate is voting overnight on the bill, to pass it back to the National Assembly for a second reading.

One gay rights group says it has received sixty complaints of anti-gay hatred in Paris in one week. And the image of one of the victims has shocked the nation.


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Les lois claires en théorie sont souvent un chaos à l'application.

Napoleon Bonaparte

Maybe if catholic leadership would quit inciting violence there would be less of it?

You're right, there have been other violent incidents in the many anti-gay demonstrations recently and the Catholics are clutching at straws because the law will pass soon.

'The bill is currently crawling through the Senate, with more debates and votes scheduled until Friday. The marriage reform was approved by the National Assembly in February, and is also expected to clear the Senate, but must return to the lower-house of parliament for ratification before becoming law.'

Watch En images : des féministes agressées lors d'un défilé anti-mariage gay in News  |  View More Free Videos Online at Veoh.com

France parliament adopts gay marriage

Police prepare for violent clashes after French lawmakers voted to legalise gay marriage.

Last Modified: 23 Apr 2013 16:17

France's parliament on Tuesday defied months of protests by approving a bill that would make France the 14th country legalising same-sex marriages.

Opponents to the law, though, vowed to fight on.

In its second and final reading, the lower house of parliament, the National Assembly, voted 331 to 225 to adopt the bill allowing homosexual marriages and adoptions by gay couples.

The bill must still be signed by President Francois Hollande and is to face a challenge in France's constitutional council.

Justice Minister Christiane Taubira immediately hailed the adoption of the bill as a "historic" moment in French history.

"It grants new rights, stands firmly against discrimination [and] testifies to our country's respect for the institution of marriage," she said in a statement shortly after the vote.

"This law ... brightens the horizons of many of our citizens who were deprived of these rights," she said.

But shortly after the vote, lawmakers from right-wing parties said they had already filed a legal challenge with the constitutional council.

It will have a month to make a ruling and opponents are hoping that in the meantime they can build up enough pressure to force Hollande, who has been steadfast in supporting the bill, to back down from signing it.

Former president Jacques Chirac shelved an unpopular employment law that had been passed by parliament in 2006, but Hollande is seen as unlikely to follow that precedent.

The government is also confident that the constitutional challenge will be dismissed.

"We have ensured that there is no legal weakness," Dominique Bertinotti, family minister, said. "The constitutional council is sovereign but the government is serene. We're confident."

Hundreds of thousands have taken to the streets in a series of protests against the bill, surprising many in a country that is predominantly Catholic but known for its liberal views.

The opposition turned increasingly nasty as the final vote approached.

Some politicians received personal threats, a handful of demonstrations ended in violence amid claims of infiltration by extreme-right activists, and there was even a scuffle in parliament as the debate concluded in the small hours of Friday.

The Socialist speaker of the lower house, Claude Bartolone, on Monday received an envelope containing ammunition powder and a threatening letter demanding he delay Tuesday's vote.

The tensions have also been linked to a spike in hate crimes against the gay community that have included attacks on bars and two serious assaults in Paris, prompting the police to take preventive measures in case of a further backlash.

The opposition UMP has succeeded in making gay marriage a focus of broader discontent with the government over the parlous state of the economy and a recent scandal in which Hollande's ex-budget minister was charged with tax fraud after admitting to having an undeclared foreign bank account.

Hollande could scarcely have anticipated the scale of the opposition he would face over a reform that initially seemed to enjoy solid majority backing among French voters.

Paris police have stepped up security ahead of a final parliamentary vote on a bill that will make France the fourteenth country to legalise same-sex marriage.

Police say legions of officers and a small battery of water cannons were at France's National Assembly on Tuesday to prevent a repeat of previous street violence.

A spokesman for the police union UNSA, Christophe Crepin, said the extraordinary security was in place to protect the city's gay community.

In recent weeks, attacks against gay couples have spiked and some legislators have received threats, including one who got a gunpowder-filled envelope.

Bernard Boucault, the city's prefect of police, said the assaults were almost certainly the result of homophobia.

"Everything possible is being done to identify those responsible and bring them to justice," Boucault said. "In order to ensure there is no repeat, we are reinforcing our presence in certain areas of the city at certain times."

Gay rights activists are planning a celebratory rally to coincide with the parliamentary vote and opponents will stage protests in Paris and across the country.




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