Two gay men attacked in street

Rights groups say attacks on the increase in run-up to vote on law allowing homosexual marriage and adoption

POLICE are investigating a homophobic assault in Nice as attacks are thought to be increasing across France in the days running up to tomorrow’s vote on homosexual marriage.

Two men were attacked and knocked to the ground after they left a gay club in the city centre. The three attackers kicked them repeatedly on the head and body and the victims had to be taken to hospital.

One of the victims, Raphaël Leclerc, later posted pictures of his cut and bruised face on Facebook.

The attack, the second in Nice in a few weeks and the fourth homophobic attack in a few days, came after gay bars in Lille and Bordeaux were attacked and two MPs from the Vendée received death threats for supporting the planned law.

It also came just hours after a protest march in Paris against the law for homosexual marriage and adoption. Police said there were 45,000 on the march but protest organisers claimed 275,000.

Manif pour Tous spokeswoman Frigide Barjot said that their protests would continue even after MPs voted to approve the law tomorrow – and she said they would be putting anti-law candidates up at coming municipal elections.

Gay rights groups say that homophobic attacks have risen 42% since 2009.