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St. Petersburg prosecutors drop claim on blocking the Russian LGBT Network’s website

The St. Petersburg Central District Prosecutor’s Office has withdrawn a claim seeking to block the website of the advocacy group Russian LGBT Network, due to a lack of evidence of “LGBT propaganda” on the platform, Novaya Gazeta reported on June 1.

According to lawyer Alexander Belik, who works with the Russian LGBT Network, the prosecution failed to attach any documents to the claim “confirming the presence of propaganda [concerning] non-traditional sexual relations.” In turn, the Russian LGBT Network’s legal representatives provided an expert opinion confirming that all of the website’s content has the required age disclaimers. 

The lawyer recalled that the St. Petersburg Court is still considering two other claims filed by prosecutors seeking to block the advocacy group’s pages on the social networks Facebook and VKontakte. According to Belik, these proceedings may take a long time. 

St. Petersburg prosecutors filed their first complaints against the Russian LGBT Network in 2019, over a group on the social network VKontakte. Prosecutors have demanded that the organization’s website be shut down twice. 

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