Russia's first ever gay Pride banned within 24 hours of being announced

Local authorities say 'we will not hold any gay parades' to 'protect ... our children from the propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations'

Samuel Osborne
Friday 17 August 2018 16:08
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Gay pride parades are often shut down by Russian authorities due to  law banning 'homosexual propaganda' and demonstrations supporting gay rights
Gay pride parades are often shut down by Russian authorities due to law banning 'homosexual propaganda' and demonstrations supporting gay rights

What would have been Russia’s first-ever gay Pride event has been cancelled within 24 hours of being announced.

A gay rights activist said the celebration would be held in the village of Yablonevy, near the town of Novoulyanovsk, which has a population of seven people.

Nikolay Alexeev wrote on Facebook to say he had received a letter saying the event could take place outside the town.

Thousands of people gather in London for Pride 2018

Mr Alexeev said the mayor of the town, Svetlana Kosarinova, was “the bravest person in Russia” for approving the demonstration.

He said the event would take place on 26 August and warned that the authorised number of attendees, 300, should not be exceeded.

The activist said it was “the most awesome event in Russia’s history!” and called Ms Kosarinova ”a real liberal, democrat, and simply the greatest human.”

However, unnamed local authorities then said the “information is not true” and stressed “we will not hold any gay parades” in a statement to the Tass news agency.

Such parades are often shut down by Russian authorities due to a 2013 law which banned “homosexual propaganda” and demonstrations supporting gay rights.

Gennady Denikayev, the town manager of Novoulyanovsk, told Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty the decision was invalid because he had not been consulted.

“I made a decision, there will be no gay parade,” he said. “We intend to protect traditional family values and, foremost, our children from the propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations.”

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