“The Russian Supreme Court’s labeling of the 'international LGBTI movement' as extremist is a grave attack on LGBTI people and those who defend their human rights”, said today the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, Dunja Mijatovic. “This stance goes against the fundamental principle that all humans are born equal in rights and dignity. Banning LGBTI people’s public existence is the true extremism, violating basic human rights standards.
I have already criticised Russia’s misuse of extremism laws to suppress dissent. This latest ruling further endangers LGBTI rights defenders in Russia, increasing the risk of persecution and hindering their vital cooperation with international allies. Russian anti-LGBTI and foreign agent laws, condemned by the European Court of Human Rights, already illegally restrict these defenders.
I call on Council of Europe member states to support Russian LGBTI human rights defenders, in Russia and abroad, and ensure their safety including the granting of long-term and humanitarian visas and access to asylum procedures when needed.”