2007-09-13 15:14:00

Moscow gay rights activists to protest ban on giving blood

Moscow, September 13, Interfax - Moscow gay rights activists will hold a number of actions on Friday to protest against the ban preventing them from becoming blood donors.

Moscow gay rights activists will come to the city blood transfusion station and ask to donate blood, Moscow Gay Pride Parade organizer Nikolay Alexeyev told Interfax.

He said they will also hold a picket near the Health and Social Development Ministry, although the protest has officially been banned by City Hall.

"The city administration keeps prohibiting any pubic actions by sexual minorities, but we will not give up. We will hold our actions despite the illegal bans," Alexeyev said.

He also said he intends to challenge the ban on the picket "at Russian courts or even at the European Court for Human Rights, if necessary."

The Health and Social Development Ministry issued a decree on September 14, 2001, prohibiting homosexuals, drug addicts and prostitutes from donating blood.