European Parliament schedules meeting to discuss homophobia

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With the rise of homophobia and xenophobia in Russia, the European Parliament scheduled a meeting to discuss such matters on October 10.

“Behind the smokescreen of ‘traditional values,’ Russian authorities turn increasingly authoritarian, limiting freedom of expression and violating human rights—not only against LGBT people, but against all minorities,” said LGBT Intergroup co-president and British Labour member of the European Parliament Michael Cashman in a press release.

“In this worrying context, we’ll ask the Commission and the European External Action Service what they’ve done to stand straight up for human rights.”

Since Russia legalized several anti-LGBT laws in June, the Kaleidoscope Trust (KT) reported an increase of violence against Russia’s LGBT community.

“Our partners in Russia are recording an increase level of violence: both spontaneous violence but also quite disturbingly premeditated and arranged violence,” KT assistant director Alistair Stewart reported to PinkNews in August.

Stewart added, “Certainly our feeling and the feeling of our [Russian] partners seems to be that it’s getting worse in the sense these laws add to a climate of fear and also work to justify a range of abuses against LGBT people.”

Putin has denied that discrimination has taken place against the LGBT community. “There was no infringement on the rights of sexual minorities,” within the new anti-LGBT laws. Putin further justified the enactment of these laws by reiterating that they were in place to instill Catholic Orthodox values and to protect the youth.

“The Europeans are dying out… and gay marriages don’t produce children,” Putin said in September. “Without the values at the core of Christianity and other world religions, without moral norms that have been shaped over millennia, people will inevitably lose their human dignity.”

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