Lithuanian parliamentary group backs European Parliament (Russia’s LGBT censorship laws issue)

Submitted by Lithuanian Gay League

The European Parliament took a stand against Russia’s LGBT censorship laws on February 16th by adopting a resolution denouncing laws which forbid the public mention of homosexuality or gender identity to minors. The resolution, presented by five political groups, reminds Russia that it is subject to human rights agreements. The text mentions the law approved by the Legislative Assembly of St. Petersburg banning so-called propaganda of “sodomy, lesbianism, bisexuality and transgenderism and pedophilia to minors” and similar laws being proposed in other regions of Russia. Various MEPs as well as the European Parliament’s Intergroup on LGBT rights have spoken against these laws.

The Intergroup also received a reaction from Lithuanian Member of Parliament Marija Pavilionienė, head of the parliamentary group ‘For Equality’, which was established as a reaction to the homophobic behaviour of some Lithuanian parliamentarians during Baltic Pride events in Vilnius in 2010. According to a letter sent by Pavilionienė to the Intergroup on LGBT rights on February 16th, the parliamentary group ‘For Equality’ shares the anxiety of MEPs who speak out against homophobic and transphobic censorship laws in Russia, and supports efforts to oppose censorship and violation of human rights of LGBT in Russia. The group underlines the necessity of modern states to respect the principals of human rights declarations and conventions, and is concerned that such bills threaten the freedom of expression and assembly and restrict public activity of the LGBT community in Russia.

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