European Court of Human Rights Fines Russia Over LGBT Discrimination

European Court of Human Rights Fines Russia Over LGBT Discrimination

The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that the Russian government must pay approximately $41,000 in damages to three lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights groups for having refused their registration in recent years.

Between the years 2006 to 2011, Rainbow House, the Movement for Marriage Equality, and the Sochi Pride House attempted to register their respective organizations with Russian authorities. The government denied each of  their applications, claiming that the organizations would undermine [Russia’s] sovereignty and territorial integrity…by decreasing its population”, and  “destroy the moral values of society”

When denying Movement for Marriage Equality’s registration, the government construed LGBT rights activities as “gay propaganda,” and said the organization’s work amounted to “extremist activities.” Russia was of course referring to its 2013 “gay propaganda” law which bans the “promotion of nontraditional sexual relations to minors,” which includes, but is not limited to, information provided via the press, television, radio, and the Internet.

The law has been condemned by the European Court of Human Rights, the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, and the Council of Europe along with all other human rights organizations.

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