On the way to the social equality: LGBT-news from Belarus and Eastern Europe, 04-10.04.2016

Group of Belarusian LGBT-journalists presents review of LGBT-news from Belarus and Eastern Europe held in the period of 4— 10 april, 2016.

Gaypress.eu, Volha Kashtsialian

Representatives of Belarusian LGBT community gain legal protection from social discrimination. The House of Representatives recently passed a bill providing for changes to the Criminal Code of the Republic of Belarus. Amendments to Article 130 of the Criminal Code to impose criminal liability not only for the «deliberate acts aimed at inciting racial, national or religious enmity or discord», but also for inciting «social hostility or discord» were made.

«A high level of bias to the representatives of the LGBT community remains іn Ukraine,» — says the report of the Ombudsman Valeriya Lutkovskaya. This leads to the numerous cases of discrimination and doubling the number of crimes due to intolerance in 2015 comparing to the previous year.

«The situation with transgender people is even worse.» According to Lutovskaya, the poor legal mechanisms hinder effective fight against LGBT discrimination.

The lawsuit on the homophobic radicals took place in Ukraine. Recall, that radical had attacked on a convoy during Equality March on June 6, 2015, resulting in 9 activists and 11 policemen injured. All four defendants got two years suspended sentences. As a mitigating circumstance the court has considered an admission of guilt by the defendants and their «sincere repentance».

We continue to monitor the conflict in Kirov between the gay club and two heterosexual men who were denied admission. For the refusal to let in, which is alleged  as an administrative violation, the club faces a fine. However,  the Russian consumer protection agency Rospotrebnadzor hasn’t discovered any infraction of consumer rights.

Unsatisfied with the decision the men sent a new appeal to the Kirov Prosecutor’s Office with the requirement to ensure access to a gay establishment for «public control over its activities.»

Children’s Ombudsman in St. Petersburg Svetlana Agapitova believes, that there are no gender identity among boys and girls in Russia, because sexual orientation, due to the country’s mentality, comes after 18 years. Hence, the issue of discrimination against LGBT teens just doesn’t exist. Well, it’s a great argument to ignore the problem, isn’t it?

The Russian deputy Vitaly Milon and the Russian Foreign Ministry condemned the foreign diplomats for participating in LGBT film festival «Side by Side» and providing it informational support.

In response, the representative of the British Embassy in Moscow said:

«The Russian Constitution guarantees all Russian citizens the right to freedom of expression, and the UK supports people enjoying this right».

What would be the reaction of British diplomats on the fact that  Murmansk court (Russia) founded as homosexual propaganda the statement  «Being gay means to be a man courageous, confident, and dignified». This phrase has been published on the page of  LGBT associations «Maximum» in the social network «VKontakte».

The accused Sergei Alekseenko recorded numerous procedural defects and intends to appeal the decision.

The Russian project Gay.Ru regularly covers the crimes on grounds of  homophobia. From the beginning of 2016, the source has already written about five cases, based on «indecent proposal» or suspect of being gay.

The last case occurred in Irkutsk, where the man was sentenced to 17 years penal colony for the double murder of a gay man and his mother. The court found that the victim had persistently suggested to the accused to get into an intimate relationship with him.