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French politicians applaud woman who was attacked after standing up to her harasser

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Politicians have voiced their support for a woman who was hit in the face by a man she stood up to after he allegedly harassed her in the street.

Student Marie Laguerre, 22, was walking by a cafe in Paris when she claims she was spoken to inappropriately by a man who went on to attack her.

The Mayor of Paris Anne Higaldo tweeted in support of Ms Laguerre after she shared the footage online, "Total solidarity! Thank you Marie Laguerre for your courage! Stop the harassment!"

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CCTV footage shows Ms Laguerre passing a man when he says something to her.

Though the video contains no sound, she claims he was making inappropriate "comments, dirty noises and whistles" towards her that led her to tell him to "shut up".

As they walked away from one another, he stopped and threw an ashtray at her, before walking round to hit her in the face.

Ms Laguerre then stumbled into the glass barrier of the cafe as her attacker walked away.

Marie Laguerre flew into a glass barrier when she was hit in the head. Credit: Facebook/Marie Laguerre

Secretary of State for Gender Equality Marlene Schiappa called Ms Laguerre "courageous," adding, "It is not tolerable that in France, in 2018, women are hit in the street because they refuse to be insulted when they walk.

"It is a fundamental issue of freedom. That's why fighting street harassment is a priority."

Ms Schiappa added that on-the-spot fines will now be issued to harassers, with the first charges coming into place from autumn.

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Mayor of the 10th district of Paris, Alexandra Cordebard, wrote to Twitter followers, " All my support for Marie Laguerre, 22, harassed and assaulted in Paris the week.

"Unfortunately what she has experienced is far too common, it is disgusting. These # violencessexistes must be fought relentlessly."

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Supporters of Ms Laguerre have used various hashtags to show solidarity, including #BalanceTonPorc meaning "rat on your pig," which is the French equivalent of #MeToo.

Women used the hashtag to tell their stories of harassment in France.

Laura Hulley, who works for the British Embassy in Paris, told of her experience with assault in the French capital.

"The last time I was assaulted in the street in Paris was last month," she tweeted.

"My very good friend was literally punched when she stood up to her aggressor."

According to news website France24, the Parisian prosecutor’s office has opened an inquiry into the incident after Ms Laguerre issued a complaint.

Her attacker is yet to be identified.