- Title: Russian LGBT activists hold mock funeral to symbolise plight
- Date: 11th October 2016
- Summary: ST. PETERSBURG, RUSSIA (OCTOBER 11, 2016) (REUTERS) ACTIVISTS PUT COFFIN WITH RAINBOW FLAG ON GROUND, POLICE OFFICER APPROACHING MEDIA COFFIN WITH RAINBOW FLAG POLICE OFFICER CHECKING ID OF ACTIVIST PIGEON ON COFFIN (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) ACTIVIST ALEXEI NAZAROV, SAYING: "We will have it (performance) in a form of lying on Nevsky Prospect in this prop. It symbolises closeness of the LGBT community and oppression it faces in Russia." POLICE OFFICERS CHECKING DOCUMENTS FLOWERS BEING PUT ON COFFIN ACTIVIST SPEAKING, POLICE OFFICER COMING TO INTERRUPT, ACTIVIST LEAVING (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) ACTIVIST FYODOR LAPTEV, SAYING: "It is especially hard for LGBT teenagers. The number of suicide among them is many times higher than among heterosexual peers." DOCUMENTS, FLOWERS ON COFFIN (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) ACTIVIST, ALEXEI POTAPOV, SAYING: "We do not call for aggression or any actions. We just ask you to think about people whom you love and who love you. They need your support as this fear is born for a reason, this is a fear to be misunderstood by their nearest, their relatives, friends and colleagues." ACTIVISTS THROWING PAPER WITH WORDS 'HATRED', 'LIES', 'VIOLENCE', 'MISUNDERSTANDING', 'REJECTION', 'FEAR' INTO COFFIN POLICE OFFICER FILMING ACTIVISTS WRAPPING COFFIN IN WHITE CLOTH POLICE CARS ACTIVISTS WALKING AWAY WITH COFFIN POLICE OFFICERS STANDING NEXT TO POLICE CAR PEOPLE WALKING IN STREET
- Embargoed: 26th October 2016 18:39
- Keywords: Russia gay rights lgbt police coffin Nevsky St.Petersburg
- Location: ST.PETERSBURG, RUSSIA
- City: ST.PETERSBURG, RUSSIA
- Country: Russia
- Topics: Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA00153KAVYF
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Russian LGBT activists held a mock funeral in St. Petersburg on Tuesday (October 11) to symbolise what they say is the oppression they face in the country.
Police kept a close watch on the gathering but left the activists to carry on with their event.
The activists threw sheets of paper with words 'hatred', 'rejection', 'discrimination', etc. into the coffin before closing it.
Some activists say suicide is high among LGBT teenagers but there are no official statistics to back this up and the topic remains closed for public discussion.
The LGBT community in Russia has come under increased pressure as President Vladimir Putin has charted a more conservative course since starting his third term in 2012.
Western governments and human rights activists have continuously criticised the Russian authorities for their treatment of gay people and in particular for a 2013 law banning the dissemination of "gay propaganda" among young Russians.
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