As demonstrators picket the Russian embassy in London today demanding that the ban on Moscow's Gay Pride Festival is lifted, London's Green MEP, Jean Lambert has spoken out in anger against the Mayor of Moscow's homophobic attitude.
Jean, who is a member of European Parliament's Intergroup on Gay and Lesbian rights, warned that a decision to ban the festival was a step backwards for democracy and human rights; "I am outraged that anyone in an elected position would even consider such oppressive actions. Banning Moscow's first Gay pride festival is a ludicrous idea following extremely old-fashioned policies.
"Threatening violent action towards the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community in Moscow will not stop people expressing their views and opinions and will simply take the city into a cycle of violence.
"Everyone is equal whatever their sexuality, gender or race and we need to ensure that the people of Moscow are granted their basic human rights they are entitled to. The Mayor of Moscow's decision must be reversed immediately as part of Russia's progress towards a modern and democratic country."
The Gay Pride festival would be the first in Moscow but Mayor Yury Luzhkov
has announced that the city government will not allow a gay parade 'in any form'
and any attempt to hold a gay event will be 'resolutely quashed.'
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Notes to editors:
Jean Lambert: In October 2005 Jean was named MEP 2005 for Justice and Human Rights. Jean was first elected Green Party Member of the European Parliament for London in the 1999 European elections. She was re-elected in 2004. She is one of nine MEPs representing London and one of two UK Green representatives in the European Parliament.