San Jose Puts Russia on Notice: Homophobic Laws Unacceptable

Condemnation of Russian's anti-LGBT laws accompanies renewal of sister-city agreement

By Chris Roberts
|  Wednesday, Oct 23, 2013  |  Updated 4:30 PM PDT
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San Jose Puts Russia on Notice: Anti-Gay Laws Unacceptable

AP

Will Russia's behavior improve now that San Jose has condemned the country's anti-LGBT legislation?

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San Jose renewed its sister-city affiliation with Ekaterinburg, Russia -- but with a special message to the Russian Federation: Homophobic laws are not acceptable.

San Jose city officials voted to put Russia on notice, informing the country with a condemnation of laws imposing fines for "propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations," according to the San Jose Mercury News.

Ekaterinburg, a city in central Russia with 1.3 million people famous for being the place where the Tsar and his family were executed in 1918, has been a sister city with San Jose since 1992.

Members of San Jose's City Council were urged by activists in the LGBT community to sever the sister-city tie entirely in light of waves of anti-LGBT feeling in Russia.

However, as Councilman Ash Kalra noted, "cutting off our ties with our sister city does nothing to affect the Russian government," the newspaper reported.

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