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Topless activists enter Russian embassy in Sweden to protest anti-gay law

Thursday, August 1, 2013

STOCKHOLM — Two topless activists climbed over a fence into the Russian embassy in Stockholm on Thursday to protest against the country’s anti-gay bill and stigmatization of homosexuals.

Police were called to the embassy in the morning to remove the activists, who are now suspected of trespassing. They were released after confessing to trespassing.

Jonas Ekstromer, Scanpix Sweden/AP
Two topless Femen activists who climbed over a fence into the Russian embassy grounds run towards the embassy building in Stockholm, Sweden, on Thursday Aug. 1, 2013, during the Stockholm Pride week celebrations, to protest against the country’s anti-gay bill and stigmatization of homosexuals.

The two women, linked to the Ukrainian feminist group Femen, waved a rainbow flag at the embassy’s grounds and carried a sign saying “homosexual propaganda on Russian ground.”

They were supported by two other activists outside the embassy, who shouted “Gay Rights are Human Rights.”

One of the activists, Jenny Wenhammar, said the group was protesting against a recently enacted Russian law which imposes hefty fines for holding gay pride rallies or providing information about the gay community to minors.

Later Thursday a group of 150 to 200 people gathered outside the embassy for a peaceful demonstration against the same law.

The activities coincide with Stockholm Pride festival, which is being held this week and which has put special focus on gay rights in Russia.

Earlier this week, Sweden’s Foreign Minister Carl Bildt also reacted to the deteriorating situation for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people in Russia.

“Hate-mongering against LGBT persons on the rise in Russia after recent law,” he wrote on Twitter. “Repulsive. Inhuman.”

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16 more reader comments:

  1. ..I know their gonna be arrested but god bless them for trying love is love!

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 1:40pm
  2. I like that they´re trying to protest against Russia´s anti-gay laws but will protesting like this achieve anything?

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 1:42pm
  3. unfounately no but still their hero´s in my book

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 1:44pm
  4. I don´t know if this is good or bad I just did research on them and they´ve earned quite a bit of Criticism for a lot of the stuff they engage in :/

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 1:48pm
  5. I don´t know- women before us paved the way for us to express ourselves without feeling like we should be ashamed of our bodies. That being said, people protest all the time but these women always make the news. So maybe, if anything, it´s getting the issue some exposure. no pun intended. :)

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 1:56pm
  6. Bravo!

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 1:58pm
  7. the law doesn´t apply in Sweden, so its really a pointless effort.

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 2:15pm
  8. The stupid Russian government is going to pay for this sooner or later.

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 2:41pm
  9. Unfortunately due to some distractions no one realized they were protesting for hours . . . but seriously . . . it would have been nice of Stockholm to show solidarity but . . . I don´t trust the Russian government so I don´t blame them.

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 4:01pm
  10. I can´t see anything that will help Russia… The citizens are so bound in the church and the church preaches hate… Over 70% of Russians support this law! And over half of them are fine with violence against gays! That is over 100mio people that are so bound up in hate!

    Fixing Russia will take an enormous effort, like fixing Africa, most of the country is frozen in time somewhere in the middle ages and the little modern there is, is corrupted being possible rescue…

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 5:48pm
  11. I just tell myself they mean well.

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 6:08pm
  12. There should be protests in every Russian Embassy around the world no matter how many people show up. As LGBTQ people we need to show solidarity all the time. There is always strength and success in numbers.

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 6:11pm
  13. They should be able to walk in the front door.

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 6:50pm
  14. See?? Homosexuals are liberal hooligans without any leash!!

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 7:01pm
  15. ^ Not sure if comment above is sarcasm or is a troll looking for attention.

    Posted on Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 8:23pm
  16. i get what they are trying to prove. But i think we are giving them another reason to censor gay propaganda. pouring vodka, running and screaming naked, and painting rainbows on everything will not help us. yes it brings attention, and thats all it brings. brings the facts, not the drama people.

    Posted on Friday, August 2, 2013 at 12:15am