Activists participating in a Sunday
kiss-in against homophobia in Peru claim police assaulted
demonstrators, Peru.com reported.
According to the gay rights group
behind Sunday's Besos Contra La Homofobia (Kisses Against
Homosexual de Lima (MHOL), about thirty police officers rushed in
to disperse about a dozen gay and lesbian couples staging their
demonstration in Lima's Plaza de Armas.
One woman, Alicia Parra, 33, who
refused to leave the plaza was reportedly struck by an officer in the
back of her skull. She received 10 stitches to repair her injury.
“We, lesbian, gay and bisexual
couples, were walking by the Plaza de Armas and we kissed, and then
the police arrived and they began to beat us and they used pepper
spray; never did they warn us, or give us a reason,” Veronica
Ferrari of MHOL said.
Members of the group on Monday said
they would bring charges against the Peruvian national police force
In a four-minute-fifty-five-second
video posted on YouTube, demonstrators are seen chanting “No to
homophobia” as officers push around a young gay male couple in an
embrace. In another shot, police are seen chasing after a female as
she takes cover in a coffee shop. (The video is embedded in the
right panel of this page.)
The group said previous demonstrations
had ended peacefully.
Comments in support of recognizing gay
unions by the nation's leading presidential candidate, Alejandro
reignited a debate over gay rights in Peru.