Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree banning all demonstrations in Sochi around the time that the Winter Olympics are to take place.

According to the AP, the decree was published in the government newspaper on Friday. It states that all “gatherings, rallies, demonstrations, marches and pickets” that are not part of the Olympics or Paralympics are prohibited in Sochi. It will be in effect from January 7 to March 21. The Winter Olympics take place in February and the Paralympics in early March.

The news service reported that such bans are unusual and that the ban could be a response to increasing international pressure against the nation's “gay propaganda” law, which was signed in June by Putin.

The anti-gay law prohibits the public promotion of gay rights in a venue where minors might be present. It has triggered calls for a boycott of the Winter Olympics.

By banning all demonstrations, Putin could be attempting to strengthen the case made in recent days by the government that the law is not discriminatory.

(Related: Russia defends anti-gay law; says it's not discrimination.)