Scotland: Two assaulted in ‘random and unprovoked’ homophobic attack in Edinburgh

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Two men were seriously assaulted in Edinburgh city centre on Saturday, as police are treating the incident as a homophobic hate crime.

One of the two men, 26, left the Planet Out bar in the city centre at 12:20 on Saturday, and turned to see that his friend, 27, lying on the ground. The two had been drinking together that evening.

After going to help his friend, the victim was then struck in the face by a man who made a homophobic remark, and then assaulted him.

After the assault, the attacker left in the company of one woman, and the pair walked towards Leith Walk.

Police Scotland officers have confirmed that they are treating the assault as a hate crime, and wish to speak with anyone who can assist with their enquiries.

The suspect is described as white, 20-25-years-old, 5ft 8ins tall with a slim build and long ear-length blond hair. He was wearing a dark blue top, light jeans and possibly spoke with a Fife accent.

On the assault, Detective Sergeant Andy MacMillan said: “This has been a random and unprovoked attack, which left one of the victims with a painful injury to his eye that required medical attention.

“Given the comments heard by the other victim, we are treating this as a homophobic assault and would urge anyone who remembers seeing anything suspicious in Picardy Place in the early hours of Saturday morning to contact police immediately.

“Similarly, anyone who recognises the description of the suspect, or who has any other information relevant to this investigation, is also asked to come forward.”

Those with information are encouaged to contact Police Scotland on 101 or the charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.