Moscow Gay Pride - Our Annual Blog

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This blog will be updated regularly throughout each day of Moscow Gay Pride.  The latest entry is at the top, and the first on is at the bottom.  All times are Moscow (UTC +3 hours), except where stated.


Queer.de - Norbert Blech blogs in German.  |  Yagg. com - Judith Silberfeld blogs in French






19:45.  AND FINALLY ... Norbert Blech, the 'Redakteur' at Queer.de, tells us: "[We] are always quite amused by the catholic fundamentalist Website kreuz.net, based officially in the States but most likely written by the Society of St. Pius X in Southern Germany.  They write such horrible things it's like satire.  But they aren't."  Click HERE for their Google-translated news on the Moscow arrests.  And with that, time for a bite to eat, and shower and get "prettied-up" as we are out to a Moscow gay club later.  Oh, yes ... nearly forgot ... Albert Lambert is in Moscow for a concert today.

19:45.  All arrested participants in Moscow Pride have now been released.

19:30.  The Yagg.com French language blog by Judith Silberfeld is now back online. Ms. Silberfeld has said that it was frightening being at the demonstrations.

17:55.  JOKE OF THE DAY: CNN has just phoned Nikolai Alekseev ... "... and did you ask for a permit for your Pride," the caller from the international broadcaster that likes to be know as the world news leader, asked!

17:0.  Directly quoting Moscow police spokesman Maxim Kolosvetov, 18 gay activists and 14 Gay Pride opponents were arrested. That means that the know Russian gay activists detained have increased from 8 to 15.

17:25.  Louis-Georges Tin has phoned to say that he has been released and was on the way to the apartment. There are other reports that the other two foreign gay activists (Dan Choi and Andy Thayer - both Americans) are due to be released.  But it looks like the Russians will be held overninght.

17:08.  Dan Choi from inside a police station: "Sometimes laughter is our only escape". His Tweets are amazing, and well worth following.

17:00.  Another YouTube video

16:10.  First photographs from Moscow Pride posted below.

15:20.  Nikolai Alekseev has NOT been arrested and is now in a "safe house".

15:15.  Tally of those KNOWN to have been arrested: Seven at Alexandrovski Gardens (three foreign, four Russians) and four (all Russians) outside City Hall. There might have been other Russian activists arrested that we don't yet know about.

14:55.  Judith from Yagg.com, Australian film maker Logan Mucha and still photographer Chad Meacham are all OK and are heading to the flat.

14:55.  Louis-Georges Tin has been put in solitary confinement after singing Bizet's "Torredador" to the police.

14:50.  Peter Tatchell has just arrived safely back at the apartment.

14:35.  Agence France Presse report online.

14:33.  Despite being detained by the police, Dan Choi is "Tweeting" ... "We are here: (gray dot) Right ear ringing small bleeding, 7 in the car including me and Andy Thayer". Later: "I am now in isolation for yelling 'Discriminatzya'!".  Follow Dan Choi on Twitter  ...

14:30.  More video footage HERE

14:25.  Three of the small group of four (including Norbert Blech from Queer.de) who were at City Hall have now returned safely. Peter Tatchell, the other participant has checked-in that he is OK and not arrested. He is with The Associated Press.

14:20.  First online video of the mayhem in Moscow.

14:15.  Meanwhile outside City Hall, three of the visiting activists have checked-in that they are OK, but keeping their heads down.

14:00.  Andy Thayer is confirmed as having been arrested, along with Dan Choi and Louis-Georges Tin, Anna and three other Russian gay activists.

13:40.  Report just in that four Russians participants in Pride have been arrested outside Moscow City Hall.

13:31.  Dan Choi and Louis-Georges Tin both confirmed as having been arrested.

13:29.  "All participants of Moscow Pride at Alexandrovski Gardens was been "brutally arrested", Chad Meacham has just reported. The arrest were made as participants arrived at the Gardens. One person, Louis-Georges Tin was allowed to give an interview with the world's TV and press. No names of those arrested are not known, apart from Anna.

13:20.   Judith from Yagg.com has just reported via SMS that Anna, one of the co-organisers of Moscow Pride has been arrested.  No other arrests have been reported so far.

13:00.  Pride participants left 15 minutes ago ... they should be at Alexandrovski Gardens now. TV crews and press photographer are reported to be in a large group ...

12:50.  Message from Minsk, where gay activists also know a thing or two about the problems of staging a Pride:   "Good luck! We are proud of you!!

12:45.  50 skinheads, together with members of the Russian Orthodox Church, have assembled close to the Alexandrovski Gardens. Also there are the police, OMON and army.

12:35.  Blogs from Moscow Gay Pride are now being translated into FINNISH.

12:25.  Yagg.com has now stopped blogging in French for the duration of the Gay Pride "demonstration". The German language blog at Queer.de will continue, with updates being posted from Bangkok.

12:15.  Skinheads are reported to be waiting at City Hall.  They are in a bus very similar to those used by the police.  "I would not be surprised that this is a provocation from the authorities to justify their illegal ban on the basis that the security cannot be guaranteed," said Nikolai Alekseev.

11:55.  Media interest in today's actions is higher than in the previous years, with news agencies calling the different organisers all the morning trying to find out where to be best located. Communication with foreign participants is being done mostly via Skype.

11:45.  Organisers have told participants that they should not take part if they do not understand the security risk.  Talking specifically to foreigners participants, the organisers : "Those of you who will be easily identified in the street should not take part as you will be an easy target especially for the skinheads".

11:30.  Police and OMON are now surrounding the two locations, and have areas around Red Square completely blocked off - even tourists cannot enter the zone.  No visible signs of skinheads ...

11:05.  The judge on duty in the Tverskoy district, which covers both locations where the two actions are due to take place, is Olga Borovkova who sentenced Boris Nemtsov, a leader of the opposition and former vice-Prime Minister to 15 days in jail (the maximum punishment) for taking part into an un-sanctioned public action on December 31.

10:30.  A small number of gay activists are out on “spying” missions in central Moscow (Red Square and City Hall areas).  There are reports that groups of thugs gathering.  Pride organisers have put out the word that the thugs are wearing black clothes and will surround Pride participants before any attack.  Any attack will be made quickly, before the police can intervene.

10:15.  Andy Thayer has received reports from USA that the telephone switchboard at the Russian Embassy in Washington DC has been swamped with calls of support for Moscow Pride/

09:30.  Awoke to find there was not a cloud in the sky and the temperature around 18 degrees...

00:45.  The day has arrived. And most here are, shall we say, somewhat concerned.  And for good reason ... in 12 hours, we will face the "triple whammy" of thugs that have publicly vowed to stop Pride going ahead, the police who have a habit of letting the thugs do as they planned before moving in to make arrests of the Pride participants while letting the thugs get away, and the often violent OMON 'riot police', about the only remnant from the Soviet era.  This has been the experience of most of the previous Moscow Prides.  Who knows, the top 'brass' at the Council of Europe, together with reported diplomatic pressure over the past week or two, might have persuaded the Russian President to hand down an order to the Moscow Mayor to keep the thugs away and "un-ban" the Pride.  Perchance to dream ...


(all photos © 2011,  Kirill Nepomnyaschiy, GayRussia.eu





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Originally posted: 25 May 2011 at 03:00 (UK time)
updated frequently


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