Russia's Interior Ministry, which controls the police force, on Monday said that a controversial anti-gay law would be in effect during the Winter Olympics to be held next year in Sochi.

The law recently signed by President Vladimir Putin prohibits the positive portrayal of gay men and lesbians in a public setting where minors might be present. It has created a worldwide outcry, calls for a boycott of next year's Winter Olympics in Sochi, and has increased tension between the United States and Russia.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) had previously said that it has assurances from Russian officials that the law would not be enforced during the Winter Olympics.

“The law enforcement agencies can have no qualms with people who harbor a nontraditional sexual orientation and do not commit such acts [to promote gay rights to minors], do not conduct any kind of provocation and take part in the Olympics peacefully,” the Interior Ministry is quoted as saying by RiaNovosti.

“Any discussion on violating the rights of representatives of nontraditional sexual orientations, stopping them from taking part in the Olympic Games or discrimination of athletes and guests of the Olympics according to their sexual orientation is totally unfounded and contrived,” the statement added.

The IOC said last week that it would ask Russia for a clear definition of “gay propaganda.”