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Russian Crackdowns Affect More than LGBTs


More concerning news regarding the situation of human rights in Russia.  Radio Free Europe, the famous pro-liberty radio station that broadcasts to Russia on shortwave and is financed by a grant from the United States, reports that two young members of the Mormon Church, known officially as the Church of the Latter Day Saints, have been detained by Russian authorities on unspecified charges.  A spokesperson for the church, which has an unusual interpretation of religious scripture, told a television channel in Utah that the two youngsters were in a good condition but understandably worried for their wellbeing.  There is little love lost between LGBT groups and the Mormon Church internationally, with the Salt Lake City based organisation having an extremely conservative stance on homosexuality and transgenderism.  It did not even allow African-Americans to hold positions of responsibility in its hierarchy until 1974.  Nevertheless, the crackdown on the group by the Russian state is seen as a human rights issue by many, given that Russia has also allegedly been torturing members of another religious sect, the Jehovah’s Witnesses.  In parts of Russia, such as the Chechen Autonomous region, widespread persecution of LGBT people has been compared to the atrocities committed by the Stalinist communist regime of the 1950s.  Another recent report from Radio Free Europe alleges that a diabetic man who supported opposition candidates in Russia was denied medical treatment for his condition.  He is now seeking asylum within the European Union. 

Radio Free Europe
Dissident Media
Independent Media
LGBT Freedom
Human Rights
Eastern Europe

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