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St. Petersburg school involves law enforcement over raising of LGBTQ pride flag

Administrators at a St. Petersburg school called the police claiming that one of their students was responsible for raising a LGBTQ pride flag in front of the building on July 9, the St. Petersburg-based outlet Bumaga (“Paper”) reports.

The district authorities told Bumaga that video footage from a nearby surveillance camera shows two girls running a rainbow flag up a flagpole next to a Russian flag, outside of School Number 511 in St. Petersburg Pushkinsky District.

“It was a diversion [...] the [Unified State Exam] is taking place at the school now,” the school’s head teacher told the outlet 78.ru (without giving her name).

Photos of the flag were posted on social media, Bumaga reports. The Pushkinsky District Administration claims that this is what allowed them to “identify one of the students from the school.” 

A snapshot of the flag was published by several groups on the social networking site VKontakte on July 9. Many of the posts included the same photo caption. However, since these posts were made in the name of the group question (rather than by a particular individual), it’s impossible to tell if the person who took the photo has any connection to the hanging of the flag.

The regional administration stated that they “had a conversation” with the student and her parents at the school, and that information about the incident was shared with the juvenile affairs commission.

“Law enforcement bodies will investigate the presence or absence of indications of a crime in the act in question,” the district administration’s representative said, as quoted by the St. Petersburg-based outlet Fontanka.