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Advocates, opponents of sexual minority rights clash in Tbilisi, 12 people injured

May 17, 2013, 20:01 UTC+3

All the injured were taken to hospital

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TBILISI, May 17 (Itar-Tass) - Twelve people, including two policemen, were injured in clashes on Friday between the advocates and opponents of the rights of sexual minorities, a source at the press service of the Tbilisi first-aid center told journalists.

All the injured were taken to hospital. Doctors describe their condition as satisfactory. Sixteen ambulances patrolled the Rustaveli Avenue, Tbilisi’s central street, during a protest against am action in support of the rights of sexual minorities, the first-aid center representative said.

Between 10,000 and 15,000 people, including clergymen and representatives of non-governmental organizations, gathered on Tbilisi’s central street on Friday to thwart an earlier planned action in support of the LGBT movement organized by the local NGO “Identity”. The action in support of sexual minorities had been timed to coincide with International Day Against Homophobia marked on May 17 every year.

“Homosexualism is a moral and psychological deformity”, “No to moral genocide” “We are against the sin rather than humans” filled the Rustaveli Avenue. The protesters did not allow supporters of the LGBT movement to hold a rally on the avenue. So, they decided to gather in one of the city public gardens. However, their opponents did not allow them to do that either. The sides clashed with each other. Later on, the LGBT supporters left the place of gathering in buses and microbuses under police protection.

Hundreds of policemen have been patrolling the Rustaveli Avenue since Friday morning until now. The street remains closed to traffic. Most protesters have gone away by now.


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