• France's news in English
Anger as Paris mayor bills gay-marriage rally
Anti-gay marrriage protesters make their way to the Champs-de-Mars, where they apparently caused some costly damage. Photo: The Local

Anger as Paris mayor bills gay-marriage rally

Ben McPartland · 17 Jan 2013, 09:30

Published: 16 Jan 2013 11:40 GMT+01:00
Updated: 17 Jan 2013 09:30 GMT+01:00

Bertrand Delanöe is demanding the damages to cover the cost of the restoration of the grass around the Champs-de-Mars, where hundreds of thousands of protesters congregated at the end of the march against gay marriage. 

For those who organized the demonstration, Delanoë’s move is a provocation.

“It is absolutely ridiculous,” Xavier Bongibault told The Local. “He would never do that if it was a pro-gay marriage demonstration.”

“He has taken a militant position towards us. He himself gave his agreement that the march could go ahead,” said Bongibault, who is gay himself but against same-sex marriage.

Organisers suggested to France's BFMTV they would not be paying up and Bongibault is proposing, all be it with a hint of sarcasm, that anyone who demonstrated on Sunday could return to the Champs-de-Mars to help replant the grass, as an alternative to paying the hefty bill.

According to radio station France Blue 107.1, Delanoë has sent the invoice to France’s interior ministry because it gave the authorization for the “demo for all” rally, which attracted between 340,000 and 800,000 people.

The Town Hall in Paris says it is up to the police to pass on the bill to the organizers of the march, France Blue reported.

French politician, Christine Boutin, an opponent of same-sex marriage, also tweeted her disgust at Delanoë’s actions.

Story continues below…

“Who are you trying to kid? @BertrandDelanoe. Would he send over the bill for gay pride?,” Boutin said.

Despite Sunday’s protest, one of the biggest seen in the French capital in decades, the French government has vowed to push on with its plans to legalize gay-marriage and open up adoption to same-sex couples.

Delanoë is expected to join activists in a pro-gay marriage demonstration in Paris on January 27th, two days before the French parliament is set to discuss the proposals.

Ben McPartland (ben.mcpartland@thelocal.com)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Saudi princess 'told guard to kill Paris decorator'
Photo: Eurovizion/Flickr

"You have to kill this dog, he doesn't deserve to live," the princess allegedly said.

Paying for sex in France: Has the new law been effective?

Around 40 sex buyers are caught each month across the whole of France. Does that sound like much?

Only in France: 'Drive slowly - grape juice on the roads'
Photo: Rexness/Flickr

You know you're in France when...

France gives lift off to tough new drone laws
Photo: AFP

Time to crack down on drones, say French lawmakers.

Bienvenue en France: France cuts red tape for UK firms
Photo: AFP

France is ready to roll out the red carpet for UK firms quitting Britain because of Brexit fears.

VIDEO: Is life on a French café terrace really this bad?
Photo: Canal Plus

Bird poo, bums and butts: Is life on les terraces really as bad as this?

'Five terror plots thwarted' on Riviera since Nice attack
A police boat patrols the waters off the beach in Nice during the summer. Photo: AFP

Authorities in Nice say five potentially deadly terror plots on the French Riviera have been foiled since the Bastille Day truck attack in the resort.

French firefighters calendar to provoke global palpitations
Photo: Fred Goudon

Warning: Some readers may suffer palpitations, sweats or other side-effects when reading this story.

Why Paris beach festival could be sand-free in future
Photo: AFP

Is a beach with no sand still a beach?

Lost without translation: The struggles of Calais migrants
Communication problems in the Calais jungle camp. Photo: AFP

So many languages are spoken in the Calais jungle migrant camp but French is rarely heard.

Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
The crazy French writing phrases you can't get your head around
Room for improvement: Paris's matchbox apartments
'Stop telling immigrants to be French and help it happen'
Take the test: How far have you assimilated into French culture?
Eleven things you should know before moving to Paris
France's Marion Cotillard rebuffs rumours of fling with Brad Pitt
Eight arrested over links to Nice truck attacker
Why everyone should party in a French chateau at least once
The Frenchman who hated 'Nazi-Zealand' after four-day hitch-hike fail
What's on: Ten exciting events across France in September
The 45-million year old underground shells that flavour Champagne
French job speak: All the terms you need to know
'Resilient' Paris now a more appealing city than New York
France says it's OK to warn drivers about speed cameras
Meet Honorine, 113, the oldest person in France
Grenoble named France's best city to be a student
New Metro map reveals cheapest pints of beer in Paris
Business & Money
How reliant is the French economy on Paris?
Here's why Parisians want to move to Bordeaux
And the 'best place to spend a weekend in Europe' is… Lyon
Analysis & Opinion
'Muslims in France must be considered ordinary citizens'
Armed guards to ride French trains from October
France among Europe's priciest for train travel
jobs available