Australian Ambassador calls for repeal of Russian anti-gay laws

Australian Ambassador to Russia, Paul Myler, has expressed deep concern about Russia’s ‘homosexual propaganda’ laws. The Ambassador urges Russia to recognise that human rights are universal, indivisible and independent and should be available to all people regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. This joins widespread condemnation of the laws which perpetuate harmful myths about homosexuality, including that homosexuality is contagious or that sexual orientation can be altered with therapy. The Ambassador criticises the laws for failing to protect LGBTI people’s human rights under the guise of trying to protect children.

Foreign Minister Bob Carr has committed to raising Australia’s opposition to Russia’s ‘homosexual propaganda’ laws with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the G-20 summit, but will not commit to publicly speaking out against the laws. LGBTI rights advocate Corey Irlam has welcomed these developments, but called on Australia to take steps to ensure Russian authorities prosecute offenders who have reportedly bashed LGBTI people in Russia following the enactment of the ‘homosexual propaganda’ laws.