10 Russian LGBT activists arrested at Sochi Olympics HQ

A group of 10 have proved what will happen if gay rights activists dare to defy the protest ban during the Sochi Winter Olympic Games

10 Russian LGBT activists arrested at Sochi Olympics HQ
25 September 2013

Ten LGBT activists were arrested at Sochi Olympics HQ in Moscow for daring to defy Russia’s anti-gay laws today (25 September).

The group, led by gay activist Nikolai Alekseev, tried to hold a protest against the ban against public rallies during the Olympic Games in Sochi next year.

According to eyewitness reports, once police seized a poster calling for the end to homophobia in Russia the group were immediately arrested at around 2pm (local time).

Spirits appear to be high in the group, having taken a picture in the police van and posted it on social media.

The group had requested formally to be able to protest peacefully, but were denied by authorities.

Speaking to Gay Star News last week, Alekseev said: ‘The denial [from Moscow] was based on the federal law banning “homosexual propaganda”.

‘They are using it to ban all protests wherever or whenever you apply. It is just being used as a pretext.’

While the group expected to be arrested, they hope it will prove embarrassing for both the Russian authorities and the International Olympic Committee.

UPDATE: Alekseev has said after four hours, all 10 activists have been released by police.

He said: ‘All charged with unsanctioned event, facing big fines.’ 

HAVE YOUR SAY

MORE TOP STORIES

No thumbnail available

The Normal Heart writer Larry Kramer on when even gays didn't want to know about AIDS

'How do you get attention when the mayor doesn't care? When the president doesn't care? ... When the gay world doesn't care?'
No thumbnail available

Lesbian country singer Chely Wright gives birth to identical twins

Twin boys arrive early but are healthy and thriving
No thumbnail available

God backs gay marriage, says cleric

The Church of England has not acted with 'integrity' so do not deserve to be listened to, according to Dean of St Albans in Out4Marriage video
No thumbnail available

Thailand university fires trans lecturer for unspecified 'inappropriate behavior'

Activist is one of the most leading LGBTI voices in the country
No thumbnail available

Second Republican break ranks on gay marriage following Gingrich comments

New York Rep. Richard Hanna has become only the second sitting Republican in the US Congress to back the repeal of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) following comments that same-sex marriage was inevitable by failed Republican presidential race candidate Newt Gingrich
No thumbnail available

Dentist gives gay hate crime victim expensive dental care for free

Man was left with a broken lip and nine missing teeth after a brutal attack during gay pride week in Austin, Texas in October 2012
No thumbnail available

Will gay US congressman Barney Frank become a senator?

He does not rule out temporarily replacing John Kerry if Massachusetts senator is appointed Secretary of State
No thumbnail available

Lawyers petition Chinese government for gay marriage

Lawyers take on campaign for same-sex marriage in world's most populous country
No thumbnail available

How I Met Your Mother spinoff adds second gay character

Andrew Santino, a ginger-haired comic, is tipped to be playing the lead character's gay best friend
No thumbnail available

Nigeria court dismisses challenge to anti-gay law

Judge says the law does not affect the straight man who filed the suit