The administration of Moscow Mayor
Sergey Sobyanin has rejected an application to hold a Gay Pride event
in the city, marking the seventh consecutive rejection for gay rights
advocates in Moscow.
The event, a May 27 march from the
downtown Turgenevskya metro station to Revolution Square, was
supposed to celebrate the 19th anniversary of the
decriminalization of gay relations in Russia.
Gay activists have challenged previous
rejections in the European Court of Human Rights. In 2010, the court
agreed that such bans were illegal.
“We'll appeal in the Tverskoi court
on Monday, we disagree with the refusal,” gay activist Nikolai
Alexeyev told Ria
Novosti. “We'll hold the rally in any case.”
Former Moscow Mayor Yury Luzhkov
aggressively shut down any unauthorized pro-gay demonstrations, which
he called “Satanic acts” and “one of the factors in the spread
of HIV infection.”
Luzhkov's departure and Sobyanin's
promise to respect the rule of law last year raised gay rights
activists' expectations that authorities would finally allow a Gay
Pride parade to be staged. However, they were disappointed when
Sobyanin followed in his predecessor's footsteps.