Police have arrested 25 people in eastern Poland after homophobic attacks on a city’s first equality march.
Videos posted on social media showed show men attacking several males and one female LGBT activists taking part in the Pride march in the city of Bialystok on Saturday.
Addressing the attacks, interior minister Elzbieta Witek said “Officers ensure security regardless of the ideas, values and beliefs proclaimed by citizens.
“Any person who breaks the law (…) should know they can be held responsible.”
It comes after LGBT rights have become an increasing issue in Poland ahead of the general election which is expected to take place in October.
The ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party has depicted LGBT campaigners as a threat to traditional Polish values.
This year, at a political rally before European Parliament elections, PiS leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski urged Poles to vote for what he called “the only party that gives a 100% guarantee that our values will be protected”.
He said LGBT rights constitute foreign values that pose “a real threat to our identity, to our nation”.
Some observers see parallels with the party’s 2015 campaign, when it deployed anti-immigrant rhetoric.