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Russia Set to Recriminalize Gay Sex

Guennady Raikov, Russian MP, the main author of the proposed law

On 22 April 2002 a group of Russian parliamentarians submitted to the consideration by the State Duma (the lower chamber of the Russian parliament) the draft law criminalizing same-sex intercourse between consenting adult males. "The unnatural satisfaction of sexual desire of one male with another male", as they defined the proposed crime, shall be punishable with 1 to 5 years in jail.

Authors of the draft law claim that their purpose is to protect the public morale, institution of marriage and health of Russian citizens. They allege that this law will help to combat venereal diseases and the spread of AIDS, as well as protect minors from being forced into prostitution and pornography.

The homosexuality was decriminalized in Russia exactly nine years ago, on April 27, 2002, under the pressure from the Council of Europe (decriminalization of homosexuality was a condition precent for the accession of Russia to the organization). The draft law, if passed, will grossly violate the rights of Russian gay men criminalizing any kind of affection between them and giving a license for a witchhunt for anyone suspected of gender non-conformity. It will be a major violation of the international and European standards, in particular, those set by the UN Commission for Human Rights (Toonen v. Australia case), the Council of Europe (Recommendations 924 (1981), 1470 (2000) and 1474 (2000)) and the caselaw of the European Court of Human Rights (e.g., Dudgeon v. the United Kingdom case).

Dmitry Rogozin, Russian MP, co-author of the law

The group of five authors of the draft law comprise Guennady Raikov, Vadim Bulavinov and Dmitry Rogozin (all from the faction "People's Deputy" - political conservative, nationalist and populist). Dmitry Rogozin is also the leader of the Russian delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. He is attending the PACE session that takes place on April 22-26, 2002, in Strasbourg, France.

Please URGE your connections in the Council of Europe, representatives of your national delegations who will attend the hearings, your parliamentarians in the PACE to raise this issue with the Russian delegation. While we are working inside the country to raise the public awareness of this issue, the Russian delegation should also clearly understand that this situation has been already brought to the attention of the CoE and will be closely monitored by human rights groups.

Please SUPPORT us with your messages of protest (in free format) addressed to:

Dmitry Rogozin
Russian Delegation to the Council of Europe
F-67075 Strasbourg France

Vadim Bulavinov, Guennady Raikov, Dmitry Rogozin
103265, Moscow, Russia, Okhotny ryad 1
Gosudarstvennaya Duma RF
faxes: +7 (095) 292 6085, 292 3315, 292 8843, 292 1081

Pavel Krasheninnikov
Head of the Legislation Committee
103265, Moscow, Russia, Okhotny ryad 1
Gosudarstvennaya Duma RF
fax +7 (095) 292 9782

Dmitry Kozak
Head of the Legal Directorate in the Presidential Administration
103132, Moscow, Russia, Staraya ploschad 4, p. 1


Official Statement by Gay.Ru
Gay.Ru strongly condemns the draft law criminalizing sex between consenting adult males as a gross violation of the right to privacy that belongs to a million of Russian gay and bisexual men.

Deputies Want to Outlaw Gay Sex
The draft law criminalizing sex between consenting adult males was called a blatant publicity stunt by fellow deputies who do not expect that it would ever become law.

Deputies Add Lesbian Sex to the List of Crimes
A deputy from the Russian Liberal Democratic Party moved to criminally prosecute sexual intercourse between consenting adult females to solve the demographic problem.

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