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Moscow Pride to defy court ban and go on as planned

Despite a Moscow suburban court ban, organizers intend to go ahead with Moscow gay Pride as planned
Nikolai Alekseev at Moscow gay pride in 2006; Moscow Pride will go ahead as planned this weekend, despite ban.

A Moscow suburb court upheld the decision of the city authorities not to permit a gay pride parade this Saturday (25 May). Despite the ban, activists say Moscow Pride will go ahead as planned.

Nikolai Alekseev, co-founder of Moscow Pride and GayRussia, stated: ‘Khimki City Court upheld the ban on the planned Gay Pride rally and march.’

He added he would appeal on Monday to the Moscow Regional Court.

Khimki authorities refused to allow a Moscow Pride march and rally, despite a subrban district court of the city ruling last year that the ban on the event is illegal.

Last year, Moscow's highest court ruled to ban gay pride parades in the Russian capital for the next century.

On Tuesday (22 May) the Council of Europe demanded Russia must act to guarantee the right of LGBT people to freedom of expression and demonstration.

Alekseev said all legal avenues have now been exhausted before the planned date, and the eighth Moscow Pride will go ahead without authorities permission.

He added that he received a letter from the European Court of Human Rights denying a request to intervene with the Russian authorities to allow Moscow Pride to go ahead.

‘If me or someone else is killed or injured in Moscow Pride on Saturday 25 May then the blood will also be on the hands of the Head of European Court of Human Rights and [its] judges’, he said.

Pride is scheduled go ahead on 25 May at 1pm starting with a protest in front of the Russian parliament bulding, demanding it drop the proposed federal law banning the so-called ‘propaganda of homosexuality’.

Pride's organizers warned participants they are subject to the to attacked by anti-gay forces and maybe arrested by the authorities.

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