gay bashing

gay bashing

Gay-Bashing in Russia (Graphic Video)

3d ago
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Translation of soundbite #1 - Elena Kostyuchenko, Gay-rights campaigner and journalist with Russia's leading independent newspaper Novaya Gazeta: "The law absolutely does not define what gay propaganda is, and the reasons are understandable, because gay propaganda does not exist. In that respect, any information on, as the law puts it, 'equal values of traditional and unorthodox marital relations' is considered 'gay propaganda'." Translation of soundbite #2 - Pavel Samburov, Gay-rights campaigner (++talking about the men who beat up patrons gathered for the "Coming Out Party" he helped organise at 7Freedays night club in October 2012++): "Several young men in hoods and surgical masks entered a room (at the club) and spread around the room. I was sitting in a big room and I honestly thought that they were part of the show and that they would take off their masks and hoods and publicly declare their coming-out at the club. Then one of them asked 'Have you ordered a fight? There you go!' And they all started pushing people, breaking glasses, and turning everything in the club upside down." Soundbite #3 - Pavel Samburov, Gay rights campaigner: "The first time it happened was on 5 December 2012, at the very first united rally 'For Fair Elections'. At the time, the Rainbow Column had only five people, we had no rainbow flag because somebody did not bring it along, and we just had a banner saying 'Gays and Lesbians Against Crooks and Thieves'. The rally ended very badly because some 300 people were detained, many of us were arrested, including me, I was arrested for 10 days. After that, people from our movement got very angry, and took to the Bolotnaya Square (where several more anti-Putin rallies took place) with rainbow flags. There were few of us, but we were angry." Translation of soundbite #4 - Denis Volkov, Sociologist with independent pollsters the Levada Centre: "By accepting such laws and other, similar, restrictive and prohibitive laws, the state is targeting the opinions of the most, so to say, average, un-progressive layers of society, the grey majority." Orthodox activists clashed with gay-rights campaigners near the lower house of parliament this week, just days before Russian lawmakers vote on proposed ban on "homosexual propaganda". About a dozen gay-rights campaigners gathered near the State Duma in central Moscow on Tuesday for a "kissing rally" to protest against the controversial new bill. The legislation being pushed by the Kremlin and the Russian Orthodox Church would make it illegal nationwide to provide minors with information that is defined as "propaganda of sodomy, lesbianism, bisexuality and transgenderism". It includes a ban on holding public events that promote gay rights. The bill is part of an effort to promote traditional Russian values as opposed to Western liberalism. As the campaigners unfurled banners and started kissing, a similar number of burly young men - who identified themselves as activists with Russia's dominant Orthodox Church - accosted them, shouting obscenities, attacking them and pelting them with eggs. After three readings, the Duma may adopt the bill, and it would become law after Putin signs it. In 1993, the Kremlin decriminalised homosexuality by removing the Stalinist-era law that punished "sodomy" by up to five years in jail. Since 1993, gay subculture became visible in Moscow and other big cities. Pop stars openly wear drag and imitate Western gay icons such as Elton John or Freddie Mercury, but homophobia remains strong. Attempts to hold gay prides in Moscow and St. Petersburg were violently dispersed by police and Orthodox activists. Some night clubs such as Solyanka in central Moscow are gay-friendly, but even at such places, gay people do not feel safe. Last October, gay-rights campaigner Pavel Samburov organised a "Coming Out Party" at the 7Freedays nightclub. Samburov, whose Rainbow Association unites several hundred activists across Russia, said that so...