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Croatian Leader Slams 'Shameful' Gay Pride Parade Violence

Croatian President Ivo Josipovic
Croatian President Ivo Josipovic has condemned violence at the first gay-rights march in the coastal city of Split.

He said the violence has "shown that there are some non-European parts of our society."

He insisted that it was "not Croatia's real face."

Prime Minister Jadranka Kosor warned that violence and hatred were "something that cannot be tolerated in Croatia."

Some 10,000 opponents of the gay-pride parade in Split hurled stones, bottles, bricks, cigarette lighters, and stones at around 200 participants who eventually had to be evacuated in police vehicles.

A dozen people were injured, four of them journalists.

The violence broke out just a day after the European Commission gave Croatia the green light to complete EU accession talks and become the bloc's next member in July 2013.

compiled from agency reports