Lesbians beaten up for refusing to kiss for men’s entertainment
This horrifying picture shows a flight attendant and her girlfriend covered in blood after a gang of men attacked them when they refused to kiss for them.
The apparently homophobic attack happened on a London bus as the couple returned home from an evening out last month.
Ryanair worker Melania Geymonat, 28, from Uruguay, was left with a suspected broken nose while girlfriend Chris, from the US, was also beaten up.
Melania, who lives in Bishop’s Stortford, Hertfordshire, said they were sitting at the front on the top deck because they enjoyed the novelty of the double decker bus.
However, during the journey she claims a gang of young men behind them saw they were a couple and started to demand they kiss while making crude sexual gestures.
Melania said: ‘They wanted us to kiss so they could watch us. I tried to defuse the situation as I’m not a confrontational person, telling them to please leave us alone as Chris wasn’t feeling well.’
The men, who were in their 20s or 30s, began throwing things and the couple told them to stop during the attack on Thursday May 30.
Melania added: ‘The next thing I remember was Chris in the middle of them and they were beating her.
‘I didn’t think about it and went in. I was pulling her back and trying to defend her so they started beating me up.
‘I don’t even know if I was knocked unconscious. I felt blood, I was bleeding all over my clothes and all over the floor. ‘We went downstairs and the police were there.’
Melania said there were at least four of them and one spoke Spanish while the others had a British accent. The attackers also robbed the couple before fleeing the bus.
Melania, who moved to the UK in February and is on a year’s sabbatical from her medical studies, says she felt safe as a gay woman in London and was stunned by the attack.
She released the picture to raise awareness of violence against women and gay people.
She is still waiting to find out if her nose was broken in the attack, which happened following a night out in Camden, north London.
Melania added: ‘What upsets me the most is that violence has become a common thing, that sometimes it’s necessary to see a woman bleeding after having been punched to feel some kind of impact.
‘I’m tired of being taken as a sexual object, of finding out that these situations are usual, of gay friends who were beaten up just because.
‘We have to endure verbal harassment and chauvinist, misogynistic and homophobic violence.’
The Metropolitan Police confirmed they had started an investigation into the homophobic attack.
A spokesperson said: ‘Police are appealing for witnesses and information after two women were assaulted and robbed in a homophobic attack on a bus in Camden.
‘The incident happened at approximately 02:30hrs on Thursday, 30 May after the two women, both aged in their 20s, boarded a N31 bus in West Hampstead.
‘As they sat on the top deck they were approached by a group of four males who began to make lewd and homophobic comments to them.
‘The women were then attacked and punched several times before the males ran off the bus. A phone and bag were stolen during the assault.
‘Both women were taken to hospital for treatment to facial injuries.’
Anyone who witnessed the incident or who has information is asked to contact police on 101 or tweet @MetCC and quote CAD737/30May.
Alternatively Crimestoppers can be contacted anonymously on 0800 555 111. Transport for London (TfL) said ‘this sickening attack is utterly unacceptable.’
Siwan Hayward, Director of Compliance, Policing and On-Street Services at TfL, said: ‘Homophobic behaviour and abuse is a hate crime and won’t be tolerated on our network.
‘All of our customers have the right to travel without fear of verbal or physical assault and we are working with the police to stamp out this behaviour on our transport network.
‘We will do all we can to support the police investigation of this incident.’
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