By Sunnivie Brydum
Originally published on Advocate.com March 18 2014 12:21 PM ET
Russia's largest gay club, Moscow's Central Station, is about to be no more, after a series of antigay attacks and a decision from the Moscow Arbitration Court that ordered the club's owners to end their lease of the building, according to Queer Russia.
Central Station was the target of at least three documented attacks in the past six months — one where armed men sprayed the club's unmarked door with bullets in November, another where malefactors released a harmful gas into the club just weeks later, and a third, allegedly organized by the building management, where a group of men dismantled the club's roof in December. In early January, the club's CEO resigned and formally requested asylum in the U.S.
That former owner, Andrei Lichinsky, told news outlets in January that police refused to respond to any of his 30 complaints about attacks on the club and its patrons, and that he had personally been targeted by the local prosecutor's office and had his car lit on fire, according to the U.K. LGBT outlet PinkNews.
Central station co-owner Ilja Abaturov confirmed to PinkNews that the club, first opened in a different location in 1997, would be permanently closing its doors.