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Russia Bans Adoptions to Countries Where Gay Marriage Is Legal

Published: February 14, 2014 (Issue # 1797)



  • The government has ruled out adoption for unmarried people in countries where marriage is legal.
    Photo: E. Razumny / Vedomosti

The Russian government has banned the adoption of Russian children by unmarried citizens in countries where same-sex marriage is recognized.

A decree signed by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and published on the government's website Thursday announced changes to a law on adoption enacted last July that banned the adoption of Russian children by same-sex couples.

Last summer's measure came at a time when certain Western countries were debating and later passing laws recognizing same-sex marriage.

Related: American Parents Pen Adoption Plea

Russia's law banning the promotion of non-traditional sexual relations to minors was passed around the same time and has generated negative attention in Europe and the United States, where activists had called for boycotts of Russian vodka and the Sochi Olympics, and the new legislation is likely to further exacerbate anti-Russian attitudes among human rights activists.

An explanatory note accompanying the amendments said that the government had acted to protect adopted children "from possible unwanted influence such as artificial forcing of non-traditional sexual behavior and the suffering, complexes and stresses that, according to psychologists' studies, are often experienced by kids raised in same-sex families."

Related: Thousands March to Protest U.S. Adoption Ban

More than a dozen countries recognize gay marriages, including the Netherlands, France, Belgium, Spain, Canada, Norway, Sweden, New Zealand and parts of Britain.

Same-sex marriage is also legal in certain states of Mexico and the United States, as well as being recognized by the U.S. federal government.

Americans are already banned from adopting Russian children under a law that was introduced after the U.S. passed an act imposing sanctions on those accused of involvement in the death of lawyer Sergei Magnitsky in 2009 and other human rights abuses.

Lawmakers including State Duma Deputy Yelena Mizulina, who supported the "gay propaganda" law and is head of the Duma's Committee for Family, Women and Children, earlier called for July's law to be expanded, arguing that children taken in by heterosexual parents could later be transferred to gay parents.

The changes to the adoption law also decrease the official time period for considering applications made by prospective parents from 15 to 10 days and eliminate the need for paperwork confirming that the sanitary conditions of the child's new home are up to standard.





 

ALL ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, Sept. 3


Although the Peter and Paul Fortress sand sculptures are more central and therefore more visible to the throngs of tourists, the 300th Anniversary Park of St. Petersburgs own collection closes today. The World Collection of Sand Sculptures that have been on display at the park reaches its final day, so fans of the classic beach activity should get there while they can.



Thursday, Sept. 4


Vladimir I. Danchenkov, Head of Baltic Customs, will be in attendance during AmChams Customs and Transportation Committee Meeting convening this afternoon at the organizations office near St. Isaacs Square at 3 p.m.



Friday, Sept. 5


Scrabble lovers and chess masters get their chance to assert their intellectual dominance at the return of the British Book Centers Board Game Evenings tonight. Held weekly on Friday nights, the event gives both board game lovers and those hoping to improve their English the chance to meet, greet and compete. Check out the centers VK page for more details.



Saturday, Sept. 6


Athletes will relish the chance to get the latest gear and try out something new at I Choose Sport, an annual event at Lenexpo forum that plans to welcome more than 30,000 people this week to the international exhibition center. Not only will visitors get to try their hand at various athletic endeavors but they will also be able to peruse equipment that can fulfill their dreams of becoming a champion.


Local KHL team SKA St. Petersburg open their season this evening at home against Lokomotiv Yarovslavl at the Ice Palace arena next to the Prospekt Bolshevikov metro station. See their website for a full schedule and available tickets.



Sunday, Sept. 7


Check out retro and antique cars at Fort Konstantin on Kronstadt Island in the Gulf of Finland at FORTuna, a yearly car festival that highlights the eccentricities of the Soviet automobile industry. A car race, contests and a stunt show will give visitors a chance to rev their engines.



Monday, Sept. 8


This evening marks the opening of the two-week ballet festival High Season at the Mikhailovsky Theater. Check the theaters website for more details about performances and featured dancers.



Tuesday, Sept. 9


Discuss the latest news and issues at the AmCham Hazardous Waste Management Roundtable this morning in the Tango Conference Hall of the Sokos Hotel Palace Bridge on Birzhevoy Pereulok. Starting at 9 a.m., planned topics include the Krasny Bor landfill and waste transportation between Russia and Finland.


Learn more about the citys modern architectural trends at the SPIBA Real Estate and Construction Committees meeting on the topic Contemporary Petersburg Style: What is It? Participants will get the chance to discuss whats in-demand with RBI Holdings Irina Petrova and Lubava Pryanikova, and the current state of the local real estate market. Please confirm your attendance by Sept. 5 through SPIBAs website if you wish to attend.



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