GayRussia launches election campaign: “No Single Vote To Homophobes!”

None of 7 political parties included in the ballot paper during Russian parliamentary elections supports LGBT rights in their electoral manifestos

GayRussia launches election campaign: “No Single Vote To Homophobes!”

Human rights LGBT project GayRussia issued a statement calling gays and lesbians not to vote for any homophobic political party during elections to Russian State Duma which will take place on December 4.

None of 7 political parties included in the ballot paper supports LGBT rights in their electoral manifestos.

“Therefore the question is not for whom to vote, but for whom NOT TO VOTE”, argues GayRussia spokesman Nikolai Baev, initiator of campaign.

Four parties represented in the list and having already their factions in the State Duma are particularly homophobic.

First of all this is “United Russia” party headed by prime minister Vladimir Putin who in his statements made gays and lesbian responsible for demographic crisis in Russia. Its governor Oleg Betin called to “tear fags to pieces”. Mayor of Moscow Sergey Sobyanin called gays “immoral” and prohibited Gay Pride Parade in Moscow this year. Finally, its faction in the legislature of Arkhangelskaya Oblast introduced and sponsored notorious bill on “propaganda” of homosexuality adopted in this summer and banning freedom of assembly, expression and association for LGBT people in this northern region of Russia.

Communist Party of Russian Federation is also notoriously homophobic. Its leader Gennady Zyuganov says homosexuality “contradicts to moral values of Russian people”. Communist members of Duma call for re-criminalization of homosexuality in Russia and for ban of family and parental rights of gays and lesbians.

Populist party “Fair Russia’s” views on homosexuality are almost the same. Its leader Sergey Mironov is an ardent opponent of gay marriages and freedom of assembly for LGBT people. Its legislators want to re-criminalize homosexuality and deprive gays and lesbians of their family and parental rights.

Right wing populist Liberal Democratic Party headed by Vladimir Zhirinovsky thinks that homosexuality leads to “degradation, disappearance and degeneration of nation”. Its faction unanimously supported bill banning “propaganda” of homosexuality in Arkhangelskaya Oblast.

“Indeed in these elections we don’t have a choice again”, says Nikolai Baev. “It doesn’t matter how you will NOT vote for homophobes: boycotting the ballot, spoiling the paper or voting for other party. The point is: don’t give them your votes!”


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May 27

Russia decriminalized male homosexuality

In 1993, President Boris Yeltsin signed a decree which repealed the law forbidding male homosexuality. Starting from 2006, Russian gay rights activists started to celebrate this date by attempting to organize an annual gay rights march known as Moscow Gay Pride. The first edition was banned and marred with violence. It was reffered as the first Russian Stonewall.

May 17

Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia

This day was founded in 2004 by French Academic Louis-Georges Tin to mark the anniversary of the declassification of homosexuality from the list of disease by the World Health Organization. Russian LGBT have been celebrating this day every year since 2005 under the leadership of Project GayRussia which was itself founded on May 17, 2005. GayRussia is Russia's coordinator of IDAHO.

May 15

Slavic Gay Pride in Minsk

Following Moscow in May 2009, Minsk was the second capital to host the Slavic Gay Pride. The March was banned and marred with violence but it did not prevent two dozens of Pride organizers from Moscow, Minsk and St. Petersburg to march over 300 meters waiving a 10meters long rainbow flag. 11 participants including some of the organizers were brutally arrested by police forces.

May 12

Lesbian same-sex couple attempt to register marriage in Moscow

2009 marked the launch of GayRussia's campaign for the opening of same-sex union of gays and lesbians in Russia. While the Constitutional Court already expressd the opinion that marriage is between a man and a woman, activists believe that the lack of partnership or marriage for gay couples is a strong point to impose legislative changes via a decision of the European Court of Human Rights.

April 11

Victory for Russian LGBT activists at the European Court of Human Rights

The five-judge panel of the Grand Chamber of the Court rejected the appeal of the Russian Federation in the Moscow Pride Ban case. The decision given on October 21 is final. By repeatedly banning Gay Pride Marches as well as other LGBT themed public action, Russia breached the European Convention on Human Rights.