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First Legal Gay March Takes Place In Moscow
4.06.2012 10:38
First Legal Gay March Takes Place In Moscow

Years spent fighting for the right to organise an event similar to European "gay pride" parade have finally - and almost unexpectedly - culminated in the March of Burning Hearts that took place in Moscow on June 3, 2012.

      Some 70 people braved the rain and potential conflict to protest against discrimination, including sexual. The event was granted after the group of activists filed a protest note against the vice-chairman of VGTRK, one of Russia's leading TV channels. Taking part in a talkshow aired to the audience of millions of people, the vice-chairman said that homosexuals should not be allowed to donate their organs for transplantation, and their hearts, instead of being implanted to save other people's lives, should be burnt. Hence was the name of the Sunday action, The March of Burning Hearts.

      Russia has historically exhibited a staunchily negative attitude towards homosexuality; even on the occasion of the Sunday event, the organisers had been warned against mentioning sexual discrimination. However, last year the European Court upheld the right of Russian LGBT movement to organise parades.

      In the end, as the participants of the parade assert, they do not protest for homosexuality, - they protest against discrimination and the denial of the freedom of assembly. As-a-matter-of-factly, they criticised Moscow opposition for keeping close contacts with nationalists who are traditionally very anti-gay.

      The police reportedly showed courtesy to the participants and followed the march to the metro, eventually protecting them from a group of nationalists along the way.

      Source: RBC.

Author: Julia Shuvalova

Tags: Russian society gay rights    

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