Berlin Pride: Police report alleged homophobic incidents
Berlin, Jul 25: Two apparent homophobic attacks were reported in Berlin during the German capital's Pride celebrations, police said on Sunday.
In one incident, two girls, aged 16 and 17, and a boy, aged 15, were confronted by a group of nine people in the Berlin neighborhood of Mitte on Saturday evening. The group approached the two girls and made anti-LGBTI remarks, police reported.
One man in the group knocked the 16-year-old's hat off her head, causing her to fall over. The same man punched her in the face when she stood up. The girl suffered light injuries, including a wound on her lip.
Separately, in central Berlin at around 3:15 a.m. local time (0115 GMT) on Sunday, a group of eight people insulted a 32-year-old man. When the man attempted to run away, the group caught up to him and attacked, kicking his head and upper body while he lay on the ground.
A female passerby saw the attack and stood in front of the victim, after which the attackers fled.
Around 350,000 participate in celebration
Final police estimates put the overall crowd size in the Pride celebration at 350,000.
The parade itself was peaceful, police said.
This year marks the first time since the start of the pandemic that the parade was held largely without restrictions. In 2021 the celebration was smaller due to COVID-19-related restrictions, and it was held virtually in 2020.
Known in Germany as Christopher Street Day (CSD), Berlin's Pride began on Saturday with the governing mayor of Berlin, Franziska Giffey, lamenting that sexual minorities were still discriminated against.
"Even today, people belonging to the LGBTIQ+ community are excluded and even physically attacked," she said. "We must therefore take a decisive stand against hate and exclusion."