Moscow, May 28, Interfax - Moscow police detained about 40 people in Moscow on Sunday as LGBT activists attempted to hold unauthorized demonstrations, the Interior Ministry department for Moscow told Interfax.
To ensure public order in the city, police had to prevent possible clashes between LGBT activists trying to hold an unsanctioned demonstration and their opponents, it said.
"As a result, about 40 people on both sides have been detained for various offences. Among them are two members of the press, who were taking part in the event rather than were covering it," it said.
All these people have been taken to a police station, where a decision will be made whether to hold them administratively liable, it said.
LGBT activists held two unauthorized demonstrations in Moscow on Sunday. They first picketed the Moscow City Duma building and then gathered near a monument to Yury Dolgoruky in front of the City Hall as part of the 2012 Moscow Pride events focused on condemning laws banning propaganda of homosexuality among minors, which have already been adopted in several regions of Russia. The Moscow City Duma also started recently to discuss such a bill.
Activists of Orthodox organizations tried to obstruct the demonstrations.
Principal organizer of Moscow Pride events and leader of the city LGBT community Nikolay Alexeyev was detained among others on Sunday. Police also took away Novaya Gazeta journalist Yelena Kostyuchenko after she had been attacked by Orthodox activists.