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Anti-gay propaganda bill passed in Siberia

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Moscow:  The regional legislature in Russia's Siberia region on Thursday passed a bill banning promotion of homosexual, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender practices among minors.

"It's mainly about various gay parades... about their promotion among minors. It's about preventing people who are not related to homosexuality from explaining to their kids what is going on," said Alexander Ilushchenko, who oversees a regional committee on culture, education, sports and youth policy.

A law penalising "the propaganda of homosexuality and paedophilia among minors" came into force in St. Petersburg on March 17, prompting mixed reactions among Russians where anti-gay sentiment remains strong.

The US State Department has expressed concern about the law which stipulates fines of up to $16,000 on individuals and up to $160,000 on organisations promoting homosexuality.

Anti-gay laws have been approved in several Russian regions including Ryazan, Kostroma and Arkhangelsk.



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