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.