UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Gay rights activists confronted Russia's U.N. ambassador and tried to hand over a petition with more than 340,000 signatures urging world leaders to help eliminate anti-gay laws in Russia ahead of next year's Winter Olympics in Sochi.
Ambassador Vitaly Churkin arrived at his residence Thursday afternoon to find 10 activists from the international gay rights group All Out outside the gate holding red placards saying: "340,457 worldwide say stop Russia's anti-gay crackdown." Minutes earlier, when they got no answer ringing the bell, they had slipped a CD with the signatures under the gate.
Churkin told the activists they should deliver the petition to Russia's U.N. Mission. But he stopped to engage All Out's co-founder and insist: "We don't have anti-gay laws. We have laws banning homosexual propaganda among minors."