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There has also been an increase in attacks on LGBT activists, and anti-gay groups have used the 2013 law to justify mounting campaigns of harassment and intimidation of LGBT teachers and other school or college staff to get them fired from their jobs.Although Russian law enforcement agencies have the tools to prosecute homophobic violence, there appears to be no will to do so and no policy or instructions from the leadership to take homophobic violence seriously.The report analyzes the authorities’ overall lack of a proper response to such violence.LGBT people in Russia face stigma, harassment, and violence in their everyday lives, and most people who spoke with Human Rights Watch said that this intensified in 2013.In some cases public officials have engaged in explicit anti-LGBT hate speech.
Police treat most homophobic attacks as common crime, such as hooliganism or assault and battery.
Moreover, it contravenes Russia’s obligations under domestic law and many key international human rights treaties to which it is a party to protect all people, including LGBT people of all ages, from violence and discrimination.
This report documents the spread of homophobic and transphobic violence and everyday harassment against LGBT people and activists that has taken place in the lead-up to and aftermath of the adoption of the 2013 anti-LGBT law.
Although for the past decade activists involved in public LGBT gatherings have faced hostility from Russian authorities and anti-LGBT counter-demonstrators, almost all activists told Human Rights Watch that the number of attacks on public LGBT events had risen in the past two years and that in 2013 anti-gay activists had attacked just about every public demonstration in favor of LGBT equality of which they were aware.
The vast majority of LGBT activists interviewed by Human Rights Watch had been attacked at least once during public events in support of LGBT equality in 20 in several cities, including Voronezh, Moscow, Novosibirsk, and St. They said that anti-gay counter-protesters routinely harass them, use offensive homophobic language, or threaten them with physical violence.