Norway is Concerned about the ’Propaganda Law’ in Russia

A proposed new law that would ban propaganda of homosexuality to minors is presented for a first reading in the Russian parliament. 

– We are concerned that the proposed new national law that would ban “propaganda” of homosexuality to minors will worsen the situation of sexual minorities in Russia. We have made our views on the already enacted laws with the Russian authorities and will continue to do so, said State Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Gry Larsen.

Larsen suggested that the new laws violate Russia’s international obligations. Before the law was passed in St. Petersburg, our consulate general and several European countries’ local representatives criticized the bill. This was done both in writing and in a meeting with the head of the Russian legislative committee, said he. 

The State Secretary Larsen also noted that Norway is working for the rights of LGBT people together with the multilateral organizations working on normative and long-term human rights and values. 

– Here we are together with others to get more attention and concrete action to address the rights of sexual minorities in Russia. Our goal is to ensure that sexual minority rights must be respected in the same way with others, says Larsen.

About the Law

The draft anti-gay propaganda act was proposed to the Russian Parliament in March 2012. It provides for fines of RUB 4 000 – 5 000 for “propagating homosexualism” to children.

The fines are higher for officials – RUB 40 000 – 50 000, and for corporate entities – RUB 400 000 – 500 000.

The legislation being pushed by the Kremlin and the Russian Orthodox Church make it illegal nationwide to provide minors with information on LGBT.

It includes a ban on holding public events that promote gay rights. St. Petersburg and a number of other Russian cities already have similar laws on their books.

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