Urgent Action - DISCRIMINATORY LAW POSTPONED IN RUSSIA
20 Dec 2012
Russian Parliament has postponed the first hearing of the amendments to the Russian Code of Administrative Offences regarding punishment for ‘propaganda of homosexuality amongst minors’ until 22 January 2013.
The bill, if passed, would lead to further discrimination of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LBGTI) people in a country where discrimination on ground of sexual orientation and gender identity is already widespread.
The Parliament’s Legal department pointed out that punishment for ‘propaganda of homosexuality amongst minors’ cannot take place so long as homosexuality is not defined in other legislation. At present Russian legislation does not contain a definition of ‘homosexuality’. In theory the draft law cannot go to a first hearing, so long as this definition does not exist. In response, the Committee on family, women and children’s affairs stated that the bill should still go through. However, they suggested a definition of ‘propaganda of homosexuality’ as ‘holding events by homosexuals in places which could be accessed by children, as well as calls to and approval of homosexual relationships on TV, radio at the time when children could see and hear them.’ They argued the bill would not ‘limit the right of a child to receive information about homosexuality, if it is stipulated by the child’s needs and age’. Amnesty International activists received similar responses to their appeals to the Committee.
Several Russian LGBTI activists, who conducted a ‘Kissing Day’ public action in front of the Parliament on 19 December 2012, as well as several counter-protestors, were detained by police on charges of ‘hooliganism’ and spent the night in the police cells. They have been fined 500 rubles (approximately US$16).
Please write immediately in Russian or your own language:
- Urging the authorities not to pass Draft Federal Law no. 44554-6, either in its current or amended form;
PLEASE SEND APPEALS BEFORE 31 JANUARY 2013 TO:
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