The State Duma passed the bill on “non-traditional sexual relations”

The State Duma passed in the third reading the federal act banning “non-traditional sexual relations”. This law makes amendments to the Administrative Code and in the federal law on “protecting children from information that can bring harm to their health and wellbeing”. 436 voted in favor no one against and 1 abstained.

The new law can stop operation of any organization and fines up to 1 million rubles, foreiners can be arrested for 15 days and deported from the country. The propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations through mass media and Internet will be punished stricter. It’s worth mentioning that the propaganda and public display of nazi attributes are fined up to 2 000 rubles. It seems that non-traditional relations in Russia are 500 times worse that fascism.

Russian commissioner for human rights Vladimir Lukin expressed his concern about this law. According to him the main problem will be in its enforcement practice which can lead to tragedies and human losses.

The second reading went in calm and relaxed atmosphere. Elena Mizulina presented the bill for about 10 minutes and was interrupted by the Chairperson 3 times as it was too long. Only one clarifying question was asked. The deputy Mitrofanov asked about the separate responsibility of foreign citizens for propaganda. Mizulina advised Mitrofanov to study Administrative Code. Apart from that there were no comments. In the end Elena Mizulina said: «sexual minorities have the same intolerance as they accuse the traditional majority».

During the reading, in front of Duma protests took place. 25 LGBT activists were arrested. At the same time authorized protest of the law supporters took place. Before that in social network there was an advertizing of money being paid for the participation in this authorized action.

Now the law prohibits “propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations”. Thus any statement about sexual relation, which the law enforcer considers “non-traditional” will be banned as the law means a ban of spreading information and expressing opinion about “social equality of traditional and non-traditional sexual relations”.

The initial bill was introduced to Duma by Novosibirsk Regional Legislative Assembly on 28 March 2012. Its readings were postponed many times. The first reading was on 25 January 2013 and provoked a lot of criticism from the side of human rights defenders, experts and even Duma lawyers. Less than in a week before the second reading the bill changed substantially. The next day the Duma laywers took their words back.

The Head of the Committee on Family Matters Elena Mizulina said many times about creation of a working group on this bill with a participation of LGBT representatives. Nevertheless Mizulina hasn’t fulfilled her commitments.