Pavel Stotsko and Yevgeny Voitsekhovsky | Pavel Stotsko | r
Pavel Stotsko and Yevgeny Voitsekhovsky have left Russia after police declared their passports invalid and opened an administrative case against them for “intentionally defacing an official document”. It is not clear where the couple traveled to.
LGBT-Network head Igor Kochetkov said police told Stotsko and Voitsekhovensky they would not be protected from possible attacks by homophobic vigilantes.
Gay Russian couple Eugene Wojciechowski and Paul Stotzko have been charged with a criminal offence, ‘intentional damage to passports or negligence’, after using an apparent legal loophole to have their Danish marriage recognised.
Interfax reported that ‘Article 19.16 of the Administrative Code on ‘deliberate damage to documents’ entails a warning or an administrative fine in the amount of 100 to 300 rubles’.
Eugene Wojciechowski and Paul Stotzko married in Copenhagen earlier this month and are reported to have had their marriage recognised in Russia where same sex marriage is illegal.
They submitted their passports on their return to Russia with an updated marital status, and said they had been formalised ‘without superfluous questions’.
They told Russian TV it was a “shock” that they did not have to fight for their union to be recognised. According to a survey released this month, 80% of Russians view gay sex as ‘reprehensible’.
A popular Ukrainian TV station has been forced to apologize and delete a programme from its archives after people complained of its lewd mocking of sexual minorities.
A handful of picketers gathered outside the offices of the 1+1 TV station on January 4 to voice their anger over a Pinocchio parody on December 31 that activists said was homophobic and deeply insulting to the LGBT community.
The sketch depicted a Pinocchio-like character as transgender and leveled crude jokes about it.
The United States has imposed sanctions on five named Russians, including the leader of Chechnya, under a U.S. human rights law that has been a major irritant between Washington and Moscow.
The five Russians were targeted under the Magnitsky Act, passed by Congress in 2012 in response to the death of Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky. They include Ramzan Kadyrov, an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The Treasury Department alleges that Kadyrov oversaw “disappearances and extrajudicial killings” especially of gay people, and ordered the killing of one of his political rivals, who had accused him of personally carrying out torture.
It is hard to verify news coming out of Chechnya, so Gay Activist reports them as allegations, not facts. The situation seems to be deteriorating rapidly, and details take some time to emerge.
A secret mass execution of up to 56 people was carried in the volatile Russian region of Chechnya on 25 January, says the Novaya Gazeta, which published a list of names of 27 people who it alleged were wiped out in the alleged extra-judicial killings which are alleged to have taken place in the capital, Grozny.
None of the alleged executed were given a trial, which is a gross betrayal of their human rights under international law.
The mass arrests and executions were triggered by the alleged killing of a policeman on 16 December 2016.
Dozens of people executed in Chechnya ‘without ever going to trial’
Europe’s top human rights court ruled on Tuesday that Russia’s prohibition of “the promotion of homosexuality” discriminates and violates freedom of expression.
The prohibition became Russian law in 2013.
The case was brought to the court by three gay activists in Russia.
The European Court of Human Rights found that “the very purpose of the laws and the way they were formulated and applied” was “discriminatory and, over all, served no legitimate public interest” and ordered Russia to pay the men a total of 43,000 euros in damages.
The three activists who sued were Nikolai V. Bayev, 42; Aleksei A. Kiselev, 33; and Nikolai A. Alekseyev, 39. They had staged demonstrations from 2009 to 2012 in the cities of Ryazan, Arkhangelsk and St. Petersburg, carrying banners stating that homosexuality is natural, and not a perversion. They were arrested and fined.