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Russia court classifies LGBTQ+ activists as 'extremists'
2023-11-30

This article shared 1340 times since Thu Nov 30, 2023
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On Nov. 30, Russia's Supreme Court ruled that LGBTQ+-rights activists should be classified as extremists—a move that representatives of queer people fear will lead to arrests and prosecutions, Reuters reported.

The court approved a request from the justice ministry to recognize what it called "the international LGBT social movement" as extremist and to ban its activities.

The move is part of a pattern of increasing restrictions in Russia on expressions of sexual orientation and gender identity.

"The authorities' move apparently serves a dual purpose," said Tanya Lokshina, associate Europe and Central Asia director at Human Rights Watch, according to an article from the organization. "It is meant to increase the scapegoating of LGBT people to appeal to the Kremlin's conservative supporters before the March 2024 presidential vote and to paralyze the work of rights groups countering discrimination and supporting LGBT people."

Under Russian law, participating in or financing an extremist organization is punishable by up to 12 years in prison. A person found guilty of displaying such groups' symbols faces up to 15 days in detention for the first offense and up to four years in prison for a repeat offense.

In a speech last year, Russia President Vladimir Putin said the West was welcome to adopt "rather strange, in my view, newfangled trends like dozens of genders, and gay parades" but had no right to impose them on other countries.

—Andrew Davis


This article shared 1340 times since Thu Nov 30, 2023
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