Russian authorities have blocked a gay parade planned north of the Arctic Circle over what they say are health dangers posed by possible hurricane winds and bad weather. Gay rights activist Nikolai Alexeyev planned to hold the parade on Feb. 9 in Teriberka, a desolate town of just over 1,000 people, as part of his campaign to host LGBT rallies in 185 cities and towns across Russia. A law banning "gay propaganda" has significantly reduced the number of gay pride events in the country since it passed in 2013. Teriberka’s local authorities cited bad weather conditions in their refusal to allow the rally according to an official letter dated Jan. 31. “I’ve never received an answer like this,” Alexeyev said in a telephone interview with The Moscow Times on Friday, adding that “95 percent of the time” the authorities cite the 2013 gay propaganda law when refusing his applications for events.
February 2 / Moscow Times