Russia lists LGBT movement as a ‘terrorist and extremist’ organization

Russia has officially added the “international LGBT movement” to a list of terrorist and/or extremist organizations alongside organizations such as ISIS.

Russia lists LGBT movement as a ‘terrorist and extremist’ organization

The Supreme Court of Russia officially made the decision to categorize the LGBT movement as an extremist and/or terrorist organization last November for its role in “inciting social and religious discord”, according to Human Rights Watch, but it has only now added it to the country’s official list of organizations.

Upon the categorization of the LGBT movement as an extremist organization, it immediately became illegal in the country to finance or participate in the LGBT movement, as with other extremist/terrorist organizations. This includes waving a rainbow flag—an action that has resulted in at least three court cases that have been tried this year. One woman was even detained for five days for wearing rainbow-colored earrings earlier this year.

Due to its classification, in Russia, support for the LGBT movement is now punishable with an up to 12-year-long prison sentence—though no such punishment has been used thus far.

This latest move continues a trend in Russia of outlawing foreign movements that have been characterized by officials in the country as Western subversion, with 17 LGBT organizations being labelled “foreign agents”. This trend has especially intensified since the war in Ukraine began. Specifically, the infamous 2013 ‘gay propaganda’ ban was reinforced in 2022, and it now covers public awareness campaigns and other activities related to LGBT activism, including in art, science, and education.

The promotion of non-traditional sexual relations and legal and/or medical gender changes have also been outlawed.

Human Rights Watch has since issued statements urging countries in the EU to extend long-term visas to LGBT people in Russia who may seek to leave the country to avoid possible criminal prosecution, persecution, threats, or in cases of emergency.

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