Openly gay Polish parliamentarian attacked following Warsaw pride event

Jakub Kaminski, PAPRobert Biedron (left) at Saturday's Pride event in Warsaw.

Jakub Kaminski, PAP
Robert Biedron (left) at Saturday's Pride event in Warsaw.

WARSAW — Poland’s first openly gay Member of Parliament reported that he was attacked after attending Warsaw’s annual pride event on Saturday.

Robert Biedron, of the liberal Palikot’s Movement party, told POLSAT News that the attack took place in a cafe in central Warsaw where he was relaxing with a group of friends following the parade.

Jakub Kaminski, PAP
Robert Biedron (left) at Saturday’s Pride event in Warsaw.

“An aggressive man insulted us, using homophobic statements. He began to choke one of my friends and punched him in the face,” said Biedron. “When he recognized me he spat in my face, raised his fists and and kicked me in the stomach.”

Biedron said the assailant fled, but was arrested a short time later.

“This was an unpleasant incident, and it shows that there is perhaps no sense in burying one’s head in the sand,” said Biedron. “You cannot call bandits patriots, a tendency that one often hears from the lips of politicians.”

Biedron added that the pride march itself had been considerably less problematic this year; he said there were no signs of stones or bottles being thrown at marchers on Saturday, in contrast to some previous years.

While several thousand people marched through the Polish capital city this year, participants called on the government for equal treatment for all Polish citizens, regardless of sexual orientation, religion or skin color.

Biedron has been an MP for the liberal anti-clerical Palikot’s Movement since the general election of 2011.

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