Dutch men hold hands in protest against anti-gay violence

Dutch politicians Alexander Pechtold (left) and Wouter Koolmees held hands outside parliament in The Hague on Monday.
Dutch politicians Alexander Pechtold (left) and Wouter Koolmees held hands outside parliament in The Hague on Monday.PHOTO: EPA

LONDON (THOMSON REUTERS FOUNDATION) - Dutch men around the world are holding hands to campaign against homophobic violence, days after a married gay couple was beaten up in the Netherlands for walking together hand-in-hand.

Using the Twitter hashtag #allmenhandinhand, Dutch men from Britain, Cuba and Australia posted photos and videos of themselves on social media holding hands with other men to condemn violence against the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community.

Dutch politicians Alexander Pechtold of the D66 party and colleague Wouter Koolmees were the first public figures to show their support, holding hands outside parliament in The Hague on Monday.

"In the Netherlands, we think it is very normal to express who you are," Pechtold told reporters.

Local media said the gay couple were beaten up as they walked through the town of Arnhem early on Sunday.

Media reported that one of the victims lost four teeth and suffered a split lip and that four teenage boys had handed themselves into police over the attack.