Gay Marriage to Go Ahead in Russia
Published: June 6, 2014 (Issue # 1814)
A new measure by Britian's Foreign Office allows British nationals and their same-sex partners to tie the knot within Russia, but the mastermind behind Russia's so-called gay propaganda law Vitaly Milonov appeared unfazed, saying he would allow "monkeys and perverts" to be married as long as it did not concern Russians.
In a statement published Tuesday on its website, the British Foreign Office said its citizens would be able to register their same-sex marriage at consulates in 23 countries where gay marriage is not legal, including in Russia.
England and Wales legalized same-sex marriage in July 2013.
In the statement, the British Foreign Office said all countries on the list had agreed to the initiative, which went into force on June 3.
The Russian law banning the "promotion of non-traditional sexual relations" to minors was denounced in the West as an infringement on the rights of Russia's LGBT community.
Milonov, the St. Petersburg lawmaker who spearheaded the so-called gay propaganda bill that was signed into law by President Vladimir Putin last summer, on Wednesday dismissed the new initiative because it did not affect Russian citizens.
"The British consulates can do whatever they want," Milonov told The St. Petersburg Times. "They can marry monkeys and register perverts for all I care."
In addition to Russia, British same-sex couples will be able to marry in countries including Azerbaijan, Estonia, Latvia, China and Colombia.
In the United Kingdom, same-sex marriage only became legal in England and Wales on March 29 of this year. It will become legal in Scotland by the end of the year.