Russian Federation Disassociates From G8 Foreign Ministers’ Endorsement Of Gay Rights

Russia is openly distancing itself from language included in a joint statement released by the G8 Foreign Ministers Meeting Chair Thursday, wherein a number of foreign ministers reaffirm the charge that “human rights and fundamental freedoms are the birthright of all individuals, male and female, including lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender individuals.” Likely referring to the anti-gay-propaganda bill currently making its way through the Russian legislative body, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said Friday, that “under the pretext of protecting the so-called sexual minorities, in effect there’s aggressive propaganda and the imposition of certain behavior and values that may insult the majority of the society.” Nearly three-quarters of Russians consider homosexuality an amoral mental deviation, a poll by the Levada Center reveals, while lonly 15 percent believe members of the LGBT community should have equal rights. — Fatima Najiy