Mr Abbott was apparently head-butted by a man this afternoon, walking back to his hotel following a private event.
Mr Abbott has been in Tasmania on Thursday lunching with campaigners who are opposed to gay marriage including his Liberal Party colleague Eric Abetz.
Former Prime Minister Tony Abbott has told the media that he was attacked and violently assaulted by a man wearing a badge supporting same-sex marriage.
"I went over to shake his hand, and then he headbutted me".
Mr Abbott said he suffered a "swollen lip" but his spokesman told AAP he did not sustain any serious injuries.
"He wasn't very good at it I've got to say, but he did make contact". The only damage was a very, very slightly swollen lip.
Mr Abbott said a member of his staff who was with him then briefly grappled with the man.
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Co-Chair of Australian Marriage Equality, the group behind the official "Yes" for same-sex marriage campaign, Alex Greenwich has since commented on the incident, saying "there is absolutely no place for violence in the marriage equality debate". "This is a debate which is about treating people fairly and with respect", he told HuffPost Australia. There is no room for any disrespect either physical or verbal in this national debate. "That's why I think the nastiness in this debate is so unfortunate", he said.
Leading "yes" campaigners were quick to condemn the alleged assault.
"There is never a place for violence or abuse".
"I urge both Yes and No supporters to act with respect and restraint because, when this postal survey is over, we will still have to live side by side as Australians".
During the campaign Mr Abbott has become a prominent voice against equality.
Opposition Leader Bill Shorten also condemned the incident, "This is awful - violence like this is never acceptable".