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Archive for Monday, October 11, 2010

Serbian police clash with anti-gay rioters

October 11, 2010

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— Serbian riot police fought running battles Sunday with thousands of far-right supporters who hurled Molotov cocktails and stun grenades to try disrupt a gay pride march in downtown Belgrade. More than 140 people were hurt and more than 200 were arrested, officials said.

Thousands of police officers sealed off the streets in the capital where the march took place, repeatedly clashing at several locations with rioters who tried to burst through security cordons.

Several parked cars were set on fire or damaged, shop windows were broken, garbage containers were overturned and streets signs destroyed. Several shops were looted before police restored peace late afternoon.

Protesters chanting “death to homosexuals!” hurled bricks, stones, glass bottles and stun grenades at riot police. Police responded by firing tear gas and deploying armored vehicles to disperse the protesters, who remained in the heart of the capital even after the brief pride march ended.

Interior Minister Ivica Dacic said police estimated that 6,000 rioters faced 5,600 policemen. He praised the police “for preventing even more serious bloodshed.”

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