MSP James Dornan: Glasgow Pride is an opportunity to show solidarity with Russia’s LGBT community

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Scottish National Party MSP James Dornan says this weekend’s Glasgow Pride is an opportunity to show solidarity with Russia’s LGBT community amid widespread oppression.

Mr Dornan, who represents Glasgow Cathcart in the Scottish Parliament, said: “I’m proud that in Glasgow this weekend our LGBT community will come together and celebrate the freedoms that they have fought for and gained over a long time.

“However it causes me great concern to see that in Russia, and many other parts of the world, LGBT people are being subjected to some of the most horrific human rights abuses.

“Glasgow, indeed Scotland, has a proud history of standing on the side of the oppressed and against the oppressor – whoever that may be. I’m sure that I speak for many when I say to Russia’s gay community: Scotland stands with you.”

A petition has been started to have Glasgow City Council break cultural ties with its Russian twin city, Rostov on Don, because of Russia’s federal homophobic censorship laws.

Glasgow’s Lord Provost Sadie Docherty sent a letter to Rostov on Don’s Mayor, Michael Chernyshev, expressing concerns over the legislation.

Glasgow-based Drag Queen, Nancy Clench, who started the petition, said: “The Lord Provost must publicly postpone her visit to Russia until such time as a full discussion has taken place between her and the Mayor regarding the treatment of the LGBT Community in Russia.”

She added: “Glasgow must lead the way, and ultimately end the twinning agreement, whilst joining with LGBT organisations in the province to provide support and solidarity.”

The campaign also follows another similar petition in July, calling for Manchester to cut its ties with the Russian city of St Petersburg.