Russian court backs gay pride in 'historic' ruling: activist
A Saint Petersburg court on Wednesday ruled illegal the city's decision to ban a gay pride parade earlier this year, gay rights activist Nikolai Alexeyev told AFP.
Alexeyev hailed the ruling by the Admiralteysky district court as the first ever in favour of gay rights activists against the city's long history of banning their attempts to march.
"This is the first ruling of its kind in the history of the Russian judicial system," he told AFP, adding that he hoped the case would serve as a precedent in an upcoming trial against a similar ban by Moscow authorities.
Earlier this month, gay rights activists held their first ever sanctioned picket in Moscow following the sacking of openly homophobic Moscow mayor Yury Luzhkov, who had slammed gay parades as "satanic".
Riot police have broken up four previous attempts to hold gay pride events in Moscow, although this year Alexeyev and a group of international activists managed to evade police and hold a brief flash-mob.
© 2010 AFP