Remember Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad announcing to a chortling American audience that Iran has no homosexuals? It seems Russia also has its head stuck in the sand regarding LGBT rights (though admittedly not to the point of hanging homosexuals from construction cranes -- yet). From Human Rights Watch:
The assembly is scheduled on November 30, 2011, to hold a second reading on a bill that would impose penalties for“public activities to promote sodomy, lesbianism, bisexuality and transsexuality.” Those promoting the bill claim it is to protect minors from LGBT “propaganda.” Individuals found responsible would face fines up to 5,000 rubles (US$160), andorganizations would face fines up to 50,000 rubles (US$1,600). The bill’s language is so vague and broad that it could lead to a ban on displaying a rainbow flag or wearing a T-shirt with a gay-friendly logo or even on LGBT-themed rallies in the city.
“This bill is a blatant attack on freedom of expression and a thinly disguised attempt to silence Russia’s LGBT community,” said Hugh Williamson, Europe and Central Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “The effort to have this law adopted in St. Petersburg, known as Russia’s northern capital, is a test case for...More >>