Former Italian lawmaker briefly detained in Sochi for displaying ‘Gay is OK’ banner

Former Italian lawmaker briefly detained in Sochi for displaying ‘Gay is OK’ banner

Update: Russian authorities say Vladimir Luxuria was never detained in Sochi. More here

SOCHI, Russia — A transgender activist and former member of the Italian Parliament was arrested and briefly detained by Russian authorities in Sochi after she reportedly held up a banner that read “Gay is OK,” according to the leader of an Italian gay rights group.

Vladimir Luxuria
Vladimir Luxuria

Vladimir Luxuria was arrested at the Olympic Park for allegedly violating the country’s anti-gay propaganda law, but was released with no charges filed, reported the Italian news agency ANSA.

Luxuria, 48, had announced her attention to stage a public protest at the entrance to the park in a series of text messages, according to Flavio Romani, president of Arcigay, an Italian gay-rights advocacy organization.

Romani said he had spoken to Luxuria by telephone from the police station where she said she had been detained, and again when she was released shortly after 3 a.m. local time in Sochi on Monday morning.

There has been no official confirmation by Russian authorities regarding her arrest.

Romani, who was in Italy, said that Luxuria planned to attend a hockey game Monday wearing the rainbow pride colors.

Earlier Sunday, she posted a photograph on Twitter of herself holding a rainbow-colored fan, with the message: “I’m in Sochi! Regards, with the colors of the rainbow, in Putin’s face!”

Don't forget to share:

Support vital LGBTQ+ journalism

Reader contributions help keep LGBTQ Nation free, so that queer people get the news they need, with stories that mainstream media often leaves out. Can you contribute today?

Cancel anytime · Proudly LGBTQ+ owned and operated

Obama denounces Uganda’s anti-gay bill: ‘A step backward for Ugandans’

Previous article

Chelsea Clinton: LGBT rights are ‘the unfinished business of the 21st century’

Next article