Police in Berlin say two attacks that appear to be motivated by anti-LGBTQ bias occurred after the city’s Christopher Street Day celebration, a Pride Parade and festival that takes place in Germany’s capital city in July each year.
In the first incident, two girls, aged 16 and 17, and a 15-year-old boy, were confronted by a group of nine people in Berlin’s Mitte neighborhoods on Saturday evening. The group reportedly approached the two girls and made anti-gay remarks to them because of the clothing they were wearing.
When the 16-year-old girl answered, one man in the group knocked her hat off her head and tripped her, causing her to fall to the ground. When she stood back up, the same man punched her in the face before fleeing on foot.
The girl suffered minor injuries, including a wound on her lip, but declined medical help, reports The Associated Press.
In the second incident, which occurred in central Berlin at around 3:15 a.m. on Sunday morning, a group of eight people confronted and yelled homophobic slurs at a 32-year-old man. As he attempted to run away, they chased after him, and, after catching up to him, physically assaulted him by kicking him in the head and upper body while he lay on the ground.
A woman passing by saw the attack and stood in front of the victim, at which point the attackers fled.
The man sustained cuts and bruises during the assault, and was treated at a local hospital before being released.
The incidents occurred just hours after Saturday’s Christopher Street Day celebration, colloquially referred to as Berlin Pride, which drew crowds of up to 350,000 revelers — marking an increase over last year’s crowd estimates, which organizers have attributed to the lifting of COVID-19-related restrictions.
The parade and festival were largely peaceful, with no reports of violence, according to police.
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