Russian activist wins court case after gay pride ban

A court in Kostroma, a Russian city about 200 miles northeast of Moscow, has ruled that two bans by local authorities of gay pride events in 2014 were illegal.  The municipality refused to issue licenses to LGBT-rights campaigners in April and June of that year.  The court ordered the city to pay 6300 rubles (about $90) in damages and court fees to the plaintiff, LGBT activist Nikolay Alekseyev.

Meanwhile, the fashion house Calvin Klein is in hot water after producing a video advertisement depicting same-sex couples.  The commercial for the fragrance CK2, which was uploaded by the company to YouTube, aims to celebrate “the diversity of connections between two people.”

Russian authorities have received numerous complaints about the ad, alleging it violates the country’s 2014 so-called “gay propaganda” law.  The law forbids the distribution of information to minors that might push them towards “nonconventional sexual relationships,” effectively banning anything in the public sphere that portrays LGBT people in a positive or neutral light.  The firm could be fined up to one million rubles ($15,000) if found guilty of violating the law.

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