A European court has ruled that Russia’s so-called “gay propaganda law” is discriminatory, promotes homophobia and violates the European Convention on Human Rights.
Nikolai Alexeyev, one of Russia’s most prominent gay rights activists who brought the case before the European court, said the ruling was as “an enormous court victory for LGBT people in Russian Federation”, adding that it would give his advocacy group the scope to have the law scrapped altogether.
Three gay activists – Nikolay Bayev, Aleksey Kiselev and Nikolay Alekseyev – had staged protests outside a school, a children’s library and a government building holding banners that said homosexuality was not a perversion.
Following legislation in several regions, Russian Federation in 2013 adopted a federal law prohibiting dissemination to minors of “propaganda” legitimizing homosexuality.
This is published unedited from the PTI feed. The European Court for Human Rights ruled Tuesday, June 20, 2017 that Russia’s law b.
The court said such laws “reinforced stigma and prejudice and encouraged homophobia”, which was “incompatible with the values of a democratic society”.
According to the court ruling, Russian lawmakers had “overstepped the margin of appreciation” of Article 10 of the convention, which guarantees freedom of expression.
Homosexuality was decriminalized in Russian Federation 1993, but homophobia and discrimination is still common. The court made this decision by six votes to one. However, permission from cities for subsequent marches has nevertheless repeatedly been dismissed since. Alexeyev along with two other activists have been repeatedly detained and fined for “disseminating gay propaganda”.
But President Vladimir Putin in December 2015 signed a law that allows Russia’s Constitutional Court to decide whether or not to implement rulings by global courts.