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British NGO blasts Russia’s LGBT ban

The London-based human rights advocacy group Amnesty International has strongly denounced Russia’s ban on “international LGBT movement.” 

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Marie Struthers, the NGO’s Eastern Europe and Central Asia director, said that the“shameful and absurd” decision by Russia’s Supreme Court is tantamount to “a blanket ban on LGBTI organizations” that will pave a way for discrimination.

“It will affect countless people, and its repercussions are poised to be nothing short of catastrophic,” Struthers said in a statement on Amnesty’s website. She called on Russia to “immediately review this ruling.”

On November 17, the Russian Justice Ministry asked the country’s top court to add the “international LGBT movement” to the list of extremist groups, citing “incitement of social and religious discord,” as well as unspecified “extremists traits.” The hearing on Thursday took place behind closed doors and reportedly involved more than 20 volumes of casefiles.

The inclusion of groups to the list of “extremist organizations” effectively outlaws all of their activities and symbols.

It is not clear which groups and people will be affected by the ruling that comes amid a crackdown on “LGBT ideology” in Russia.

In 2013, the country outlawed LGBT “propaganda” to minors. The legislation was expanded in November 2022 to include a total ban on “propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations and preferences,” as well as transgenderism. 

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