European court rules Russia's ban on LGBT rallies violates rights

From GayNZ Team, 29 November 2018

The European Court of Human Rights has rulled that Russia's continued ban on LGBT rallies is discriminatory and represents a violation of human rights.

Judges at the court have called on Moscow to introduce "systemic measures" to correct the breaches to the European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR) that the Russian Federation became a signatory to in 1996.

It's doubtful that Russia will implement the court's recommendation of the need for "a sustained and long-term effort to adopt general measures" to ease the freedom to march and counter LGBT discrimination.

The current case was brought by seven Russian activists over the period 2009-2014 who were concerned by the impact of the ban. Russian authorities have been putting obstacles on LGBT rallies for years, and systematically turning down LGBT permit requests.

The court said Russia's blocking of public LGBT events couldn't be justified by any concern about the public disorder and it breached the right to freedom of assembly.

The ban on LGBT rallies "had clearly been motivated by the authorities' disapproval of the theme of the demonstrations," the court concluded.

Several Russian politicians and lawmakers have recently hit back against the court, calling on the government of President Vladimir Putin to break with the ECHR over a perceived politicization in its rulings.