Moscow court slams gay activists

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

An attempt by gay activists to protest a ban on their parade last May has met with failure as Moscow’s Tverskoy court rejected their case.

The court ruled that successful attempts by the city authorities to ban the parade were legal.

Event organiser and prominent gay leader Nikolai Alekseyev told Interfax the judge was challenged by plaintiffs during the hearing due to improper actions but the legal basis for the ban was nonetheless upheld.

He pledged, however, to protest the court judgement with a cassation instance and through the European Court of Human Rights.

The Moscow police and city authorities are widely criticised by activists for adopting an unashamedly homophobic posture during recent attempts by the gay community to express their culture.

In particular, the police are accused of standing to one side when homosexuals are attacked in the city.

Blockades of gay clubs by protestors in April and May of last year led to complaints from the community that the police had failed to intervene.

A gay rights forum later in the month had its accompanying march banned by the mayor.

Some activists march despite the ban and laid flowers at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

This was met by violent protest from neo-Nazi and Orthodox groups.

The BBC reported that despite beatings by protesters against the gay marchers, police managed to arrest 50 marchers and only 20 protestors.

Yesterday’s court judgement refers to the attempted march organised for May this year, where renegade marchers again attempted to take to the streets despite a ban.

The police again failed to protect gay activists from attack.

Italian MP Marco Cappato was kicked by protestors and then detained when asking a policeman for protection.

Peter Thatchell and Nikolay Alekseyev were also detained.