May 17 - Conservative activists break up gay rally in Georgian capital Tbilisi on International Day Against Homophobia. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
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Georgian Orthodox believers interrupted a rally in honour of the International Day Against Homophobia on Friday (May 17) in Tbilisi, breaking through police cordons and clashing with gay activists.
The conservative protesters, led by black-skirted priests, held signs reading "Stop promoting homosexual propaganda in Georgia" and "Not in my city".
Some activists brought nettle plants, with which they intended to beat gay people, they told Reuters.
What was planned as a peaceful demonstration in front of the old parliament building by about 30 people in the Georgian capital ended with masses of people pushing and police trying to restrain conservative activists. Several people, including some journalists, received minor injuries, local media said.
The march last year ended similarly, and on Thursday (May 16), the head of the Georgian Orthodox Church, Ilia II, told the authorities not to allow the rally saying it was "a violation of majority's right" and "an insult" to Georgian traditions. He has previously described homosexuality as an "anomaly and a disease".