Just weeks after organizers had been told they would be permitted to hold the first ever gay pride parade in the Russian capital, Moscow authorities on Tuesday rejected their application, citing a risk of public disorder.
Nikolai Alexeyev told The Associated Press on Tuesday he had received a letter from the deputy mayor saying the rally — planned for May 28 near the Kremlin — had been outlawed.
“Moscow city government considers it is justified in not permitting the announced event to go ahead,” said the letter, according to Alexeyev.
Moscow authorities said they received letters from officials and members of religious and Cossack groups telling them to ban the event and threatening protests in retaliation, reported AFP.
Previous attempts to stage gay rights rallies have been suppressed in major Russian cities, with Moscow’s former mayor Yury Luzhkov once calling homosexuality “satanic.”
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