Circo Bar, San Juan’s most popular gay nightclub, was attacked by a group of masked figures dressed in black this past Saturday. The attackers deployed what appears to be a crude explosive devise — possibly a Molotov cocktail. Activists are now calling for the situation to be investigated as a hate crime.
According to INTO, no one was killed or harmed in the attack, nor did the bar experience any significant damage. El Vocero indicates the explosive maybe been comprised of flammable liquid lit inside a bottle. The bar had been operating on a generator at the time; the area still lacks power following a series of devastating extreme weather conditions faced by the island in the past months.
The assailants had fled before police arrived on the scene.
A motive has not been officially ascertained by police. Activists, led by Pedro Julio Serrano, are asking the Division of Crimes Against Property and the Division of Explosives and Public Security to consider anti-LGBTQ sentiments as a likely motivation for the incident.
Serrano is hoping police will “investigate if there is an motivation of hatred," he said in a Tweet.
Serrano has also stressed the particular vulnerability of Puerto Rico's LBGTQ populating amidst the area's crisis. Although the territory's LGBTQ community has “has created its own support networks," the group “is suffering the lack of essential services.”
Much of Puerto Rico remains without power or clean drinking water. More than 51 people have died as a result of the natural disaster.
[Photo: Getty Images]