Ultra-right activists in Ukraine have attempted to derail a lesbian conference in Kiev, engaging in scuffles with security guards.

Several dozen activists from ultra-right groups picketed a hotel hosting a European lesbian conference that opened Thursday. They tried to break through security cordons protecting the entrance and sprayed tear gas at the guards.

The assailants were holding placards "We are against gays" and "Go back to hell, sodomites."

One ultra-right activist, Margarita Korotkikh, said their goal is "to put pressure on the government and explain that heterosexuals are against LGBT propaganda."

Ukraine's ultra-right groups have become increasingly assertive, regularly assaulting gatherings by LGBT and women's rights groups. International rights groups have criticized Ukrainian authorities for failing to track down and punish ultra-right activists for acts of violence and intimidation.