A resident of the Saratov region was issued a protocol on “demonstration of the symbols of an extremist organization” for a photo with rainbow flags published on social networks. This is the first such case in Russia, according to the human rights project “First Department”.
A photo with rainbow flags was found on Instagram by an operative of the Center for Countering Extremism (Center “E”). According to the administrative protocol, the resident of the Saratov Region committed the offense a month before the entry into force of the decision of the Supreme Court to recognize the non-existent “international LGBT movement” as extremist. She faces a fine of up to two thousand rubles or administrative arrest for up to fifteen days. In case of repeated violation, it can be brought to criminal responsibility with deprivation of liberty for a term of up to four years.
In a comment to the Saratov newspaper Svobodnye Novosti, lawyer Maksym Olenichev noted that thanks to this case, human rights activists managed to obtain the text of the decision of the Supreme Court of Russia to recognize the non-existent “International LGBT Movement” as an extremist organization and to ban its activities in Russia.
Mediazona has read the document and provides excerpts from it. Below are quotes from the Supreme Court decision, the spelling of the original has been preserved.
As follows from the documents presented by the Ministry of Justice and established by the case materials, since 1984 there has been an international public movement of LGBT (lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people) on the territory of the Russian Federation. It arose in the USA in the 60s of the 20th century as part of the policy of limiting the birth rate, which proposes the promotion of non-traditional family relationships.
The appearance of supporters and followers of the Movement in the Russian Federation is due to foreign political influence, the purpose of which is to eliminate moral condemnation and consolidate the ideology of the Movement at the state level.
The movement does not have registration and a single structure on the territory of the Russian Federation, it consists of various unregistered organizations, including international non-governmental organizations, communities, groups that include persons of non-traditional sexual orientation, as well as individual activists and participants who are not such, but carry out their activities in the interests of the Movement.
The international public movement of the LGBT is essentially a destructive ideological mechanism of influence on citizens, including minors, threatens the demographic situation in the country, contributes to the creation of conditions for the self-destruction of society.
According to the conclusion of experts of the Nizhny Novgorod Academy of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation, the Movement has a negative impact on various groups of the population, including children and adolescents. The demonstrative-aggressive, obsessive nature of the propaganda of LGBT ideology, provocative in its content and semantic orientation, is essentially an ideological and value expansion and contradicts traditional Russian spiritual, moral and family values.
One of the main goals of the destructive ideology of the Movement is the need to change the concept of religious perception of LGBT people in the minds of people. Under the influence of the ideology of the Movement, the interpretation of the Bible is changing.
The materials of the case established that the Movement and the community of LGBT supporters are radical in their views and manifestations, which are based on hatred of traditions, religion, thousand-year-old culture and their bearers.
The Court considers the arguments of the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation to be worthy of attention that the scale of the Movement’s spread and its organization, as well as the fact that its activities are coordinated from the territory of foreign states, create a threat of anti-Russian forces using numerous participants of the Movement to interfere in the internal affairs of the Russian Federation and destabilize social and political situation and national security of the Russian Federation.
- The Supreme Court of Russia recognized the non-existent “international public LGBT movement” as an “extremist organization” and banned its activities on the territory of Russia on November 30, 2023. The lawsuit was filed by the Ministry of Justice of Russia, which considered that the activities of the “movement” revealed “various signs and manifestations of extremist orientation, including the incitement of social and religious discord.”
- Recognition of an extremist organization means, among other things, a ban on the demonstration of its symbols, and any non-negative assessment can be interpreted as a justification of extremism or calls for extremist activity.
- Representatives of the LGBT community and human rights activists previously expressed fears that recognizing the non-existent movement as extremist would actually put all LGBTQ+ people in Russia at risk of administrative or criminal prosecution.