Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday defended a law which prohibits the promotion of “gay propaganda” to minors.

The AP quoted Putin as arguing that the law is “no infringement on the rights of sexual minorities.”

The law has faced worldwide condemnation and prompted calls for a boycott of next year's Winter Olympics in Sochi.

Putin went on to criticize European nations which have allowed gay couples to marry. “[T]he Europeans are dying out … and gay marriages don't produce children.”

“Do you want to survive by accepting immigrants?” Putin added. “Society can't absorb such a number of immigrants. Let us make our own choice, as we see it for our country.”

This is the second time that Putin has defended the law. Earlier this month, he told the AP that he can't be anti-gay because he gives gays prizes.

“I assure you that I work with these people,” Putin said. “I sometimes award them with state prizes or decorations for their achievements in various fields. We have absolutely normal relations, and I don't see anything out of the ordinary here. They say that Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky was a homosexual. Truth be told, we don't love him because of that, but he was a great musician, and we all love his music. So what?”