Man charged with head-butting ex-Australian PM

Canberra: A 38-year-old man has been charged with head-butting former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, police said on Friday.

Abbott alleged a same-sex marriage campaigner assaulted him on Thursday after asking to shake his hand as he left a newspaper office in Hobart, Tasmania, reports said.

The politician is a prominent opponent to same-sex marriage, which is currently being voted on by.

The police confirmed the man had worn a “Vote Yes” badge.

Australia is holding a two-month poll on whether to allow same-sex marriage. The results of the survey, due in November, could prompt a non-binding vote in parliament.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull called for a respectful debate, saying there was “zero tolerance” for violence and disrespectful conduct.

Labor leader Bill Shorten said it was “never acceptable” and Alex Greenwich, the co-chair of Australian Marriage Equality, was also quick to denounce the incident.

Tasmania state police charged the alleged attacker with common assault on Friday afternoon.

The man was granted bail and will appear in a local court on October 23.