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Question for Foreign and Commonwealth Office

UIN 222292, tabled on 27 January 2015

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment his Department has made of the level of persecution of LGBT people in Russia.

Answered on

3 February 2015

We have strong concerns about Russia’s law banning the promotion of “non-traditional” sexual relations among minors, particularly its potential to legitimise homophobia and encourage violence against LGBT people. In September 2014, Russia’s Constitutional Court ruled that this law was not in breach of the Russian constitution. In December 2014, Human Rights Watch released a report documenting an increase in violence and harassment against LGBT people in Russia since the law was introduced in June 2013. The report claimed that anti-LGBT groups had used the law to justify campaigns of harassment and intimidation, including campaigns to get LGBT teachers fired from their jobs.

We have raised concerns about LGBT rights in Russia bilaterally at a number of levels, and through the EU, since the law banning the promotion of “non-traditional” sexual relations among minors was passed in June 2013. I raised concerns about the protection of LGBT people in Russia with the Russian Ambassador at our last meeting on 18 December.