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Russian Gay Activist Arrested at Protest

Russian Gay Activist Arrested at Protest

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Leading Russian gay activist Nikolai Alekseev was arrested Tuesday evening in a protest outside Moscow City Hall, marking his second detention by authorities in a week.

Despite his recent prolonged detainment, Alekseev, the organizer of the Moscow gay pride celebration, joined 10 other activists in a protest against Mayor Yuri Luzhkov, who is widely recognized for homophobic remarks and opposition to the pride event.

According to UK Gay News, "Mr. Alekseev said that he was injured during his arrest. He was speaking by telephone from inside a police van from which other activists were heard chanting 'happy birthday Mayor Luzhkov' -- it is the Mayor's 74th birthday today."

Alekseev returned to Moscow on Saturday after an ordeal in which he claims that police, who may have been agents for the successor to the KGB, abducted him in an effort to pressure him to drop a complaint in the European Court of Human Rights against Moscow authorities for their repeated bans on the pride celebration.

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