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France’s PM calls for calm as three men are attacked in gay bar

France’s PM calls for calm as three men are attacked in gay bar

France’s Prime Minister has called for calm as three employees of a gay bar were attacked in Lille.

As thousands of people protest for and against throughout the country, the National Assembly has begun the final discussions on the ‘Marriage for All’ bill, which will legalize same-sex marriage and adoption for gay couples.

France’s Interior Ministry says four people have been detained on suspicion of breaking the windows of a Lille gay bar, insulting the staff and injuring three of them.

The bar’s owner linked the incident to ‘tensions’ surrounding the parliament vote.

‘I was a hit by a chair thrown through the window,’ he told the Associated Foreign Press.

The ministry also said several other people were detained on Wednesday (17 April) in Paris after a protest against marriage equality ended with some protesters fighting police and damaging cars along the Champs-Elysees avenue.

Due to the recent increase in violence, such as protesters throwing flares, bottles and stones, police have had to use tear gas.

Speaking to journalists, French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said: ‘These protests have a right to take place, we are in a republic. But calls for violence, calls to hate, must be condemned.’

Last week, anti-gay marriage opponent leader Frigide Barjot shouted: ‘Hollande wants blood, he will have it! All of the world is furious. We live in a dictatorship.’

Introducing the bill for its second reading, Justice Minister Christiane Taubira slammed ‘spouters of hatred’ who had violently opposed it.

‘This bill takes nothing away from them — there is more than one way to live as a couple or as a family,’ she said.

If the law is approved on 23 April, a mass protest is planned for 26 May to demand its withdrawal and a referendum on marriage equality.