LGBTQ Crisis

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East-West Divide

The worsening crisis defies Western efforts to promote individual rights

Information War

Agendas and bias in LGBTQ media coverage across the former Soviet Union

Kremlin Influence

Moscow’s role in turning sexual orientation into a matter of political ideology

Orthodox Church

How the Church is both fueling and taking advantage of the LGBTQ Crisis

Latest articles
Orthodox Church
Unholy Alliance
Orthodox Church
The Kremlin and the Cross
Rights abuses

The human cost of cultural and state-sanctioned homophobia

News Briefs
9 November, 2017
Anti-Semitic Graffiti Triggers Moscow-Bulgaria Row over WWII

The governments of Russia and Bulgaria have been trading insults about each other’s actions during World War II, after anti-Semitic graffiti was daubed on a monument to the Soviet Red Army in the Bulgarian capital, Sofia. The graffiti read “100 years of Zionist occupation,” which was seen as a reference to the hundredth anniversary of

14 August, 2016
Wife of Russian Politician Demands All Issues of Liberal Newspaper Destroyed

Novaya Gazeta newspaper, one of the last remaining liberal voices in Russia is once again under attack, this time from Igor Sechin, one of the most powerful men in Russia, a close friend of Vladimir Putin and the CEO of the world’s fifth biggest oil and gas company Rosneft. Sechin is suing the publisher for

12 August, 2016
First Pride Parade Outside of Kiev Goes Ahead Despite Threats

Close to one hundred LGBTQ activists marched in the Black Sea port city Odessa in the first-ever pride parade to take place outside of the capital Kiev. The march was preceded by threats of violence from nationalist groups prompting local authorities to ban the event on security grounds. But activists who took to the streets

8 August, 2016
Russian Culture Ministry Finances Research Into ‘Derusificating Technology’

The Russian Culture Ministry announced the winner in a competition for a grant to research “derussificating technology” and other ways “Russophobia” can be generated. The Moscow-based non-profit “Institute of Legislation and Regulatory Development” will receive a 1.75-million-ruble ($27,000) prize to investigate “Russophobia.” Russophobia is a “reaction to Russia objectively reaching the historical stage of national

First Openly Gay Minister Appointed in Serbia

Serbia has become the first country in the Balkans to have an openly gay minister. The appointment of 40-year-old Ana Brnabic as Minister of Public Administration and Local Government was controversial in a country where homophobia is widespread and Pride marches were banned for four consecutive years after a violent attack on activists in 2010.

28 July, 2016
A Rare Legal Victory for a Gay Woman in Siberia

A district court in Novosibirsk fined a carpentry workshop for refusing to hire a woman on the grounds that she is a lesbian. The woman, Anna Balash, went to court in Russia’s third largest city after she applied for a sales manager position twice at Sib-Alliance. After she was turned down from the position, Balash

26 July, 2016
Riga’s Mayor Fined for Posting in Russian on Social Media

The mayor of Riga Nils Usakovs was fined by Latvia’s federal language-regulator for using Russian on the city council’s social media accounts. The country’s State Language Center enforces national language laws regulating the use of Latvian. On his own Facebook page, where Usakovs has more more than 75,000 followers, the mayor said he only learned

18 July, 2016
Pokemon Go Poses a Threat to the Value of Human Identity, Says the Russian Orthodox Church

Along with all other computer games, Pokemon Go can be potentially addictive and threaten an individual’s freedom announced the Russian Orthodox Church’s spokesperson. The spokesperson identified what he called “the threat of a person transforming from a free being to a personage from a video game.” The spokesperson highlighted that the problem isn’t Pokemon Go

10 July, 2016
Russian Orthodox Church Says ‘No’ to 260-Foot Statue of Christ

After being rejected by Sochi, artist Zurab Tsereteli’s statue of Jesus Christ was turned down by the St. Petersburg Diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church. “Installing this type of gigantic statue is not Orthodox tradition,” said a spokesperson from the dioceses to RIA Novisti. The statue was cast in a factory in St. Petersburg in

Law Banning the ‘Exploitation of Interest in Sex’ in Advertisement Introduced in Russian Duma

The proposed bill would ban advertisers from “exploiting” interest in sex or sexual functions. Oleg Mikheev, a Duma Deputy from the A Just Russia Party, introduced the bill and commented that exploiting sex “deteriorates morals.” He charged advertisement for products such as perfume, chewing gum, and cars with using stimulating images of woman. “Thanks to

8 July, 2016
American Pastor Supportive of LGBT Rights Deported From Russia

James Mulcahy of the Metropolitan Community Church was charged with violating his tourist visa and ordered to leave Russia. The 72-year-old pastor was found guilty of engaging in religious activities in a Samara court after he was detained on Saturday at the local LGBT community center Avers. Several people, including one police man and two

6 July, 2016
Moscow Police Fail to Respond to Call After a Handicapped Man Was Attacked at a Gay Club

A patron at Moscow’s gay club Secret was attacked by a bouncer inside the club. He was first nearly denied entry at the club and was told to leave his wheelchair outside. Then after the man’s friend carried him inside, another guard, yelling “handicapped people are parasites,” punched the 23-year-old. The man, Dmitry Zhdanov, called