Russian President Vladimir Putin has
used his annual state of the nation address to defend a controversial
In his 70-minute televised speech
delivered from an ornate Kremlin hall, Putin defended conservative
values without naming the law which prohibits the promotion of “gay
propaganda” to minors.
Putin said traditional family values
had helped make Russia great and protected it against “so-called
tolerance – genderless and infertile.”
“This destruction of traditional
values from above not only entails negative consequences for society,
but is also inherently anti-democratic, because it is based on an
abstract notion and runs counter to the will of the majority of
people,” Putin said.
Conservative values, Putin added,
“prevents [society] from falling backward into chaotic darkness and
the state of primitive man.”
Approval of the law provoked worldwide
condemnation and calls for boycotts of Russian made imports and
international events taking place in Russia, including the upcoming
Winter Olympics in Sochi.
AP reported that Putin's remarks were met with enthusiastic
applause from an audience made up of lawmakers, judges and religious