An LGBT+ campaigner is calling for intervention from the Spanish government after two gay men were allegedly attacked outside a club in Valencia.
The two men – Andrea, aged 19 from Vercelli, and Luca, aged 25 from Milan – were reportedly punched and kicked while their attackers screamed “f**king a**hole” and “f**king b**ch” at them.
The pair called the Gay Help Line, which is operated by Italy’s Gay Center in Italy, following the attack.
According to Fabrizio Marrazzo, spokesperson for Gay Center, Luca attempted to defend Andrea and in return “received punches and kicks all over his body, causing bruises and wounds on his face, too”.
He added: “Another foreign couple also risked being attacked by the same group, but managed to escape by getting into a taxi.”
The Gay Center reported that the two men will file a complaint with the Italian consulate once they have returned home.
“Our request is that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs should intervene as soon as possible, taking action in support of the young people attacked and to prevent the attackers from going unpunished,” added Marrazzo.
“We recall that Spain has protected homosexual persons since 1995 in its penal code, while in Italy there is no law against homophobia.
“What happened in Valencia, happens every day in Italy, in the deafening silence of politics.”
LGBT+ people are not protected under hate crime laws in Italy.
There is no law against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity in Italy, except for in relation to employment.
LGBT+ people are not protected under the country’s hate crime laws.
And at present, same-sex couples in Italy cannot legally marry.
In Spain, however, hate crimes and hate speech on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity have been illegal since 1995.
Same-sex marriage and adoption by same-sex couples has been legal in Spain since 2005.