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Gay tourists
attacked in Croatia

Gay tourists
attacked in Croatia

A gay German couple traveling through the Croatian town of Split was attacked by unknown perpetrators, police and local media reported on Friday. The incident was the latest in a series of homophobic attacks on tourists along Croatia's popular Adriatic coast in recent months, according to Agence France-Presse reports.

The two German men, ages 20 and 39, were beaten up late on Wednesday while walking on a street in Split, a police spokeswoman told AFP. Of the two, the 39-year-old suffered serious injuries and needed medical treatment for a broken nose, she said.

According to local press, the two were holding hands when they were attacked. It was the fourth attack on gay and lesbian tourists in the Split area since July.

In the most serious incident, locals attacked two gay British men on the southern island of Hvar in mid July. One suffered a concussion and broken teeth, and the other had part of his ear bitten off. And earlier this month two local men assaulted a group of six Spanish women after the women swam naked and kissed on a public beach in Split.

According to AFP, Croatian society is still largely conservative, and the powerful Roman Catholic Church has labeled homosexuality a "handicap" and "perversion." The Balkan country has become a popular tourist destination in recent years, attracting 7.9 million visitors in the first eight months of the year, according to official figures. The country's population is 4.4 million. (The Advocate)

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