Russia moves to outlaw LGBTQ+ rights movement
Author: John Russell
Russian authorities have moved to outlaw the country’s LGBTQ+ rights movement, labeling it as “extremist.”
The Associated Press reported that the country’s Supreme Court will hear the lawsuit on November 30.
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As The Guardian noted, Russian authorities have labeled human rights groups, independent media, and groups opposing President Vladimir Putin’s regime as extremists in the past. Some have been prosecuted and received lengthy jail sentences.
It remains unclear if by “international LGBT public movement” the Russian Justice Ministry meant any specific organizations or the country’s LGBTQ+ community broadly.
Dilya Gafurova, a human rights activist who has left Russia, told Agence France-Presse that Russian authorities are not simply trying to “erase [the LGBTQ+ community] from the public field: they want to ban us as a social group.”
Igor Kochetkov, head of Russian LGBT Network, told The Guardian that it was clear that all “legal activities of LGBT organizations will be impossible in Russia” if the Supreme Court sides with the Justice Ministry.
According to the BBC, an LGBTQ+ activist in Russia told the Moscow Times that the ban would make it impossible for LGBTQ+ organizations to operate. “Essentially, it would entail criminal prosecution based solely on one’s orientation or identity,” the activist said, noting that activists already “face pressure from the state, as well as from homophobic and transphobic groups, often enduring physical attacks.”
The lawsuit is just the latest move by Putin’s government to crack down on LGBTQ+ rights.
In 2013, the Russian president signed a law banning so-called LGBTQ+ “propaganda” in the presence of minors. Last December, Putin signed a new law expanding the country’s definition of what constitutes LGBTQ+ “propaganda” to include any “promotion” of homosexuality in public, online, or in media. The law also bans the “demonstration” of homosexuality to children. The 2022 law effectively outlaws any public expression of LGBTQ+ life in Russia.
Earlier this year, Putin signed a law banning transgender individuals from receiving gender-affirming care, changing their gender on official documents and public records, fostering or adopting children, and having a legal marriage, going so far as to require any marriages involving at least one trans person to be annulled.
Actual Story on LGBTQ Nation
Author: John Russell