IKEA deletes article on lesbian couple from magazine’s Russian edition

An IKEA store in Russia

An IKEA store in Russia

Swedish furniture retailer IKEA says it has cancelled an article about a lesbian couple in the Russian edition of its customer magazine because that would have contravened that county’s law on gay propaganda.

An IKEA store in Russia

An IKEA store in Russia

IKEA spokeswoman Ylva Magnusson says the story about the couple living with their child in London appeared in the December print edition of its club magazine and was available for customers in 25 markets worldwide, but not in Russia.

Magnusson said Wednesday that due to the advice of legal experts, IKEA was not able to publish the article because Russian law “has restrictions regarding promoting homosexual relationships.”

Last year, the furniture giant was criticized for deleting images of women from the Saudi version of its furniture catalog.

The Russian law passed in June prohibits distribution of any information that could influence minors that “nontraditional sexual relationships” are “socially equivalent to traditional relationships.”

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Russia also enacted a law this summer that prohibits LGBT Russians from adopting children and prohibits adoptions by single foreigners from countries that recognize marriage equality.

The laws have sparked calls for a boycott of the Winter Olympic Games being held in Sochi in February, and gay rights activists say the laws have led to an increase in anti-LGBT violence in Russia.

Associated Press contributed to this report.

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