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Russian MPs’ new draft bill seeks jail, fine for gays who come out

Russian MPs’ new draft bill seeks jail, fine for gays who come out

Two senior Russian Communist MPs on Friday presented a draft bill calling for people who publicly declares a ‘non-traditional sexual orientation’ or ‘demonstrates one’s distorted sexual preferences in public places’ to be fined up to 5,000 rubles (US$80).

Those who come out as gay in a school, ‘cultural establishment,’ or government building could serve up to 15 days in jail or police cells, reported Russian news network RT.com.

Ivan Nikitchuk and Nikolai Arefyev told Russia’s pro-Kremlin newspaper Izvestia they came up with the measure because a hugely controversial ban on ‘gay propaganda’ to minors signed into law by President Vladimir Putin in 2013 was not proving effective.

The proposed bill will be added as an amendment to the infamous ‘gay propaganda’ ban.

Nikitchuk told reporters that he considered homosexuality to be a ‘grave danger for any normal person and for humanity as a whole’ because it can affect children and grandchildren and prevent them from reproduction.

‘In a biological sense, failure to reproduce is the same as death and this makes homosexuality a deadly danger for humanity,’ said the 71-year-old deputy head of the parliament’s natural resources committee.

He also clarified that the draft bill would only apply to gay men as ‘women are more reasonable people and more able to manage their emotions,’ he was quoted as saying in an interview with the Russkaya Sluzhba Novostei radio station.

The draft bill has attracted criticism both from the gay rights campaigners as well as from St Petersburg city lawmaker Vitaly Milonov, who is known to be the main sponsor of the 2013 law banning gay propaganda to minors.

He said that the existing laws are sufficient because any public statement that could affect children is already banned.