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Russian founder of LGBTI teen support group fined thousands for breaking anti-gay law

Russian founder of LGBTI teen support group fined thousands for breaking anti-gay law

Lena Klimova, the founder of LGBTI kids’ support group Children-404 in Russia, is the latest victim of the country’s controversial ‘anti-gay propaganda law’.

The social worker has been fined 50,000 rubles ($780, €700) by the Russian courts for creating the online community group in March 2013.

The website encourages young people to share experiences of how it feels to grow up as an LGBTI person. It’s said Klimova, who was previously acquitted of the same charge, did not have access to legal counsel before her conviction.

The vague legislation of the anti-gay propaganda law, enacted in 2013, bans the promotion of non-heterosexuality throughout the country.

Shawn Gaylord, spokesperson for Human Rights First, said: ‘It’s been nearly a year since the Sochi Olympics brought international attention to the situation for Russia’s LGBT community.’

He added: ‘While much is happening in the world, it is crucial that we not move on to the next issue and ignore what is happening in Russia, particularly when neighboring countries such as Kyrgyzstan appear to be following suit.’

‘Russian activists who are standing up for justice and human rights for all still face persecution and we must continue to support their efforts.’

Last week, GSN reported how the Russian government announced it will seek to ban films that ‘defile its culture.’