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First Russian Media Outlet Fined for Gay Propaganda

Published: January 31, 2014 (Issue # 1795)



  • Protesters at one of the many "anti-gay" rallies held in St. Petersburg last year.
    Photo: National-Democratic Party / VKontakte

Anti-gay propaganda legislation introduced in Russia last year has been used for the first time against media with the fining of a newspaper editor who reported about a school teacher allegedly fired because he was gay.

Alexander Suturin, editor-in-chief of the Molodoi Dalnevostochnik newspaper in the Far East, was fined 50,000 rubles ($1,400), local news website Amurburg.ru said Thursday.

Suturin, who blamed the verdict on a shadow morality police and brown plague, said he would appeal.

Molodoi Dalnevostochnik, the oldest publication in the Khabarovsk region, came under fire because it bears a label warning people only above the age of 16 to visit its website, Amurburg.ru said.

Related: U.S. Reporter Stages Gay Pride Protest on Russia Today (video)

A law passed in June prohibited promotion of nontraditional sexual relations among minors. The age of majority in Russia is 18.

The story in questioned, titled A History About Gay-ography, dated back to September.

It detailed the claims of a local geography teacher and gay rights activist who said he was pressured into quitting his job at school and assaulted by neo-Nazis because of his sexuality.

Suturin denied in court that the report constituted propaganda of gay relationships.

The law against gay propaganda has provoked a backlash in the West and prompted calls to boycott the Sochi Olympics taking place next month.

Related: Putin Signs 'Blasphemy' and 'Gay Propaganda' Bills

The law prohibits informing underage children about the attractiveness of nontraditional sexual relationships and giving them distorted ideas about social equality of traditional and nontraditional sexual relationships.

President Vladimir Putin has repeatedly claimed in public, however, that the law does not amount to discrimination of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual community.





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Friday, Aug. 1


Bikers from all around the world will gather to take part in a parade, extreme shows and rock concerts during the International Biker Festival that revs its engines today and runs through Aug. 3 near Olgino Hotel, 4/2 Primorskogo Shosse.


The Peter and Paul Fortress will be turned into an open-air cinema today and tomorrow as part of the 5th International Short and Animation Film Festival. A huge screen across the fortress walls will air short films non-stop with board games, photo sessions and other activities also on offer for visitors. For more information, visit www.opencinemafest.ru



Saturday, Aug. 2


Gatchina Palace Park Museum will host its second annual Night of Light, an impressive audio-visual show across the night sky. Tickets are 600 rubles ($16).


If graphic design is more your thing then check out Illustration Day, where you will be able to visit an exhibition, attend lectures by professionals and even show experts some of your own work. The event starts at noon at Zona Deystvia, 73 Ligovsky Prospekt. The entrance fee is 350 rubles ($10).



Sunday, Aug. 3


History lovers shouldnt miss the chance to see reenactments of World War I battles in Pushkin at noon. Besides exciting war scenes, visitors can enjoy live music, historical costumes, an equestrian show and a fancy-dress parade starting from the Moscow gates.


Garage Sale, the popular and growing flea market where nothing is priced over 500 rubles ($14.11), starts today at noon in Loft-Project Etagi, 74 Ligovsky Prospekt. Be sure to get in early to score a bargain. Entry costs 50 rubles ($1.40)



Monday, Aug. 4


Continue the working week with a calm and steady mind with a free yoga lesson at 7 p.m. in the Bukvoyed store at 23A Vladimirsky Prospekt.



Tuesday, Aug. 5


Visit The Romanov Dynasty doll exhibition today, where more than fifty porcelain dolls depicting Russian rulers, and made by Olina Ventzel, will be on show. The exhibition continues through Aug. 31 in Sheremetyev Palace, 34 Fontanka Naberezhnaya.



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