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State Duma, PACE to discuss Russian LGBT issues in Moscow on February 11

January 16, 2014, 20:20 updated at: January 16, 2014, 20:30 UTC+3 MOSCOW
PACE representatives had been invited to Russia by State Duma Speaker Sergey Naryshkin.
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Head of  State Duma Committee on Family, Women and Children Yelena Mizulina

Head of State Duma Committee on Family, Women and Children Yelena Mizulina

© ITAR-TASS/Alexandra Mudratz

MOSCOW, January 16. /ITAR-TASS/. Russia’s State Duma Committee on Family, Women and Children will meet a delegation of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) in Moscow on February 11 to discuss the current situation of the LGBT community in Russia, Yelena Mizulina, the head of the Duma’s committee, told Itar-Tass on Thursday.

She noted that PACE representatives had been invited to Russia by State Duma Speaker Sergey Naryshkin.

“Members of the delegation ask the Russian side to organize a meeting with the committee,” Mizulina said. “Sergey Naryshkin has ordered to prepare such format. Most members of the committee have already confirmed their readiness to participate.”

Mizulina added that at the request of European parliamentarians, the parties would discuss a wide range of issues connected with the situation of the LGBT community in Russia and the Russian ban on adoptions by foreign same sex couples.

“We will discuss all those issues worrying our European counterparts,” she said. “They argue there are some violations in Russia. I do not know anything about it and I have not heard of any violations.”

Mizulina recalled the speech of State Duma Speaker Naryshkin at a PACE session on October 1, 2013 in Strasbourg, where he stressed that “people with non-traditional sexual orientation enjoy the same rights as people with traditional sexual orientation” in Russia.

“They succeed in business, art and any creative sphere… They have the right to have a good time in Moscow and other Russian cities according to their interests,” he said then, inviting PACE members to visit Moscow’s gay clubs in order to see first-hand that the rights of sexual minorities were not violated.

“Unfortunately, I won’t be able to visit them /the gay clubs/ with you, but I will definitely take care of you, and you will make sure of my words,” he added.

“Probably, they will really visit gay clubs as well,” Mizulina said, with a smile.

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