Plans for a
first-ever gay pride parade in Moscow hit a major roadblock
Thursday when the city administration announced that it
would not consider an application to allow the parade,
London's The Independent reports. A spokesperson
for Mayor Yuri Luzhkov said the proposed event, which
would be the first of its kind in the country, had
"caused outrage in society, particularly among
As local gay and lesbian activists have worked
to gain permission to stage the parade, scheduled for
May 27--the 13th anniversary of Russia's
decriminalization of homosexuality--various
church leaders have publicly decried the idea. The
bishop of the Russian Orthodox Church called the event
a "cynical mockery" and compared homosexuality with
leprosy, while a Muslim cleric threatened violent protests
should the parade happen.
"If they come out on the streets anyway, they
should be flogged," chief mufti Talgat Tadzhuddin
said. "Any normal person would do
that--Muslims and Orthodox Christians alike." He added
that the protests "might be even more intense than
protests abroad against those controversial cartoons."
Parade organizers said plans will still go
forward and that a formal application to stage the
event will be made in May. They were also considering
taking their case to the European Court of Human Rights. (Advocate.com)
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