Gay marriage opponents continue protests in Paris
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Tens of thousands took to the streets of Paris on Sunday in another round of demonstrations against the legalisation of gay marriage and adoption. The French parliament is due to vote the bill into law on Tuesday, making it the fourteenth country in the world to do so.
Protesters shouted: "Hollande, we don't want your law," in a call to French President François Hollande, who has pushed for legalising gay marriage and adoption since his presidential campaign. "We will never let this go, never, never, never!"
Demonstrators snaked through the streets of Paris, wearing pink and blue, the colour of the anti-gay marriage movement, while waving flags and chanting.
Albéric Dumont, a member of the organisation “Protest for All,” told the AFP news agency, “We only have a few days left. We’re not going to leave the streets now.”
Sunday’s protest drew far fewer than the major opposition rally on 24 March, which saw around 300,000 people, but it follows a series of smaller protests this past week.
Frigide Barjot, the outspoken leader of the opposition movement, said radical groups would not be welcomed at the Paris protest.
Three people were, however, arrested for carrying mace. Alexandre Gabriac of the extreme-right group, Jeunesses nationalistes, who was charged for violent activity during this past week’s protests, was allegedly at the rally and accompanied by a group of fellow activists.
On Tuesday, the same-sex marriage bill will be definitively adopted by the National Assembly, but could potentially be appealed.
The UMP has already announced that, following Tuesday’s vote, it will make an appeal request to France’s Consititutional Court.