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Russia deports German accused of 'LGBT propaganda'

May 2, 2023

A Russian court found a German citizen guilty of promoting "LGBT propaganda" and decided to expel him from the country.

Activists carry rainbow flags as they march during a May Day rally in St. Petersburg in 2013.
Rights groups have harshly criticized the Russian 'LGBT propaganda' law as a state encouragement of homophobia, intolerance and discriminationImage: Dmitry Lovetsky/AP/picture alliance

A German citizen convicted by a Russian court of "promoting non-traditional sexual relations" will be deported from the country, Russian media reported on Tuesday.

A court in the far eastern region of Kamchatka decided to fine a German identified only as R. 150,000 rubles (approx. €1,700, $1,880) and expel him from Russia. The German citizen has admitted his guilt in court, the Russian news agency RIA said.

It is not clear yet how R. "promoted not-traditional sexual relations." RIA, citing local media, said a 40-year-old teacher from Germany invited a 25-year-old resident of Kamchatka to his hotel room in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and offered to have sex with him.

The court judgment was issued in early April and has now been carried out. On Tuesday, bailiffs delivered R. to Moscow. From there, he will return to Germany via Turkey.

Russian law bans LGBTQ 'propaganda'

What is 'LGBT propaganda' according to Russian law?

LGBT is the English abbreviation for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender. It is widely used in Russian society and media, including in such terms as "LGBT propaganda."

The law signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin in December bans advertising, media and online resources, books, films and theater productions deemed to contain "propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations," or colloquially "LGBT propaganda," expanding a 2013 ban on such "propaganda" aimed at minors.

In April, the ban on any "demonstration of non-traditional relations" contained in the new law prompted Moscow's Bolshoi Theater to pull the ballet dedicated to dancer Rudolf Nureyev because it touches on Nureyev's homosexuality.

Rights groups have harshly criticized the law as a state encouragement of homophobia, intolerance and discrimination.

dh/sms (dpa, RIA)