Russian Politicians Push to Outlaw Gay Sex
April 24, 2002
SUMMARY: A small Russian political party is
calling for a return to laws outlawing homosexuality.
MOSCOW—A small Russian political party is calling
for a return to laws outlawing homosexuality. The People’s Deputy bloc has
introduced legislation that would reinstate an old Soviet law that provided
for prison terms for gay and lesbian sex.
A phone-in poll by a Moscow radio station found most people divided on the
The survey, by Ekho Moskvy radio, showed 53 percent of those polled said
they would not support the People’s Deputy proposal. But, 47 percent said
that homosexual acts should be illegal.
The station conducted the phone in poll over a five minute period and
recorded 2,813 calls.
Oleg Mironov, a Russian human rights commissioner, called returning to
Soviet sexuality laws "ridiculous."
He said: "The Criminal Code does in fact contain criminal provisions
for homosexual acts, where they constitute rape or they occur with regard to
minors. However, I do not think that we should return to the old Criminal Code
in which voluntary relations of this type were punishable in law."
Mironov said, though, that he would support raising the age of consent.
"The thing I would change is the age of consent, which I would raise
to 16. At the moment it is legal to have such relations if a person is 14
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