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Archive for Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Mayor vows never to permit gay parade

January 30, 2007

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— The mayor of Moscow, Yury Luzhkov, vowed Monday never to allow a gay rights parade.

Speaking at a Kremlin event attended by the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, Luzhkov lambasted gay and lesbian groups.

"Last year, Moscow came under unprecedented pressure to sanction the gay parade, which can be described in no other way than as satanic," he said to applause in comments broadcast on a city-controlled TV channel. "We did not let the parade take place then, and we are not going to allow it in the future."

In 2006, Luzhkov and city authorities barred activists from staging a parade, citing the threat of violence. Activists ignored the ban, and were attacked by right-wing protesters and detained by police.

Russian gay activists said they were challenging the city's ban of their parade in an appeal to the European Court for Human Rights, and pledged to have a similar march in late May.

The Russian Orthodox Church expressed support for the ban.

"I believe that in the 21st century people will realize the malignancy of perversions opposing the family in its natural form as bestowed by God," Interfax quoted Father Vsevolod Chaplin as saying.

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