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Putin warns West not to interfere on ‘gay issues’ in Russia

Russian President says despite a 'gay gag' bill is set to become law, it does not infringe on the rights of LGBT people
Vladimir Putin has warned Western countries not to intefere on 'gay issues' in Russia.

Vladimir Putin has warned Western countries not to interfere on Russia’s plan to ban ‘gay propaganda’.

Speaking in Finland yesterday (25 June), the president said he does not instruct other countries on their position on homosexuality therefore they should not interfere in Russia.

‘In some countries, such as Europe, here in Finland, do not believe they need a law [on homosexuality]. We are not going to interfere with your laws. We will limit as the deputies decide in the State Duma,’ Putin said.

‘Please do not interfere with our laws.’

Putin added the rights of LGBT people in Russia are not violated under the ‘gay propaganda’ law, saying he must think of the rights of children.

‘They are full-fledged members of our society, and this law does not discriminate.’

Speaking to Gay Star News, gay rights activist Nikolai Alekseev, currently in Finland, described the law as ‘barbaric’.

'Russia is isolating itself by criminalizing homosexual relations. We have seen the tip of the iceberg.'

He added: 'It cannot get worse. People are getting killed because they are gay. No one really cares in the government.'

Under the nationwide ‘non-traditional relationships’ propaganda law, which was passed in Russia’s lower house two weeks ago, any gay rights organization could be fined up to one million rubles ($30.8k, €23.2k)

Individuals found to be ‘promoting homosexuality’ will be fined up to 5,000 rubles ($166, €124).

The Senate is expected to pass the bill later this month, leaving it to be signed into law by Putin.

The speech comes as the International Olympics Committee has defended itself against allegations it will not protect gay athletes and tourists during the Sochi Winter Olympics 2014.

In a recent poll examining Russian attitudes on gay rights, 85% said they opposed same-sex marriage, 22% said gays should be ‘cured’ and 5% said homosexuals should be ‘liquidated’.

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