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Arrested for saying gay

To Russian President Vladmir Putin:

As concerned world citizens, we call on you to end your support of discriminatory legislation against lesbian, bi, gay and trans people that eliminates their freedom to speak publicly and assemble. Russia is a signatory to numerous international human rights treaties - including the European Convention on Human Rights which forbids measures such as St. Petersburg’s gay hate law. We call on you to reverse course, respect Russia’s treaty obligations, and urge St. Petersburg authorities to drop all charges against peaceful demonstrators.

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In five days, two men in Russia will face criminal prosecution for holding a simple sign that read, "Being gay is normal" -- they are first victims of St. Petersburg's new gay hate law. But international opposition to the law is mounting and our outcry could turn up the heat and force Russia to abandon their attack on free speech and equality.

Any mention of homosexuality is illegal in Russia's second-largest city and similar laws are being considered across the country -- making this test case key to stopping the crackdown on love. Even Madonna has joined in the fight, vowing to purposely break the law at an upcoming Russian concert. Let’s join her and brave gay activists on the ground to stop the discrimination in its tracks.

Our call now will put this outrageous trial on the international agenda and help force the repeal of the law. When we get to 500,000 signatures, our call will be delivered to the city government in St. Petersburg. Sign now and join the fight against hate.
Posted: 11 April  2012

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