'Gay Putin' photo banned as extremist propaganda by Russian state

07 April, 2017, 02:13 | Author: Brian Mcdaniel

The ministry's ban follows a verdict reached a year ago by the Central Regional Court of Tver, which banned the "gay Putin" image and several other pictures published on Vkontakte by Tsvetkov.

Item 4071 of 4074 on the country's index of extremist materials is a picture of a Putin-like individuals "with eyes and lips made up".

The image was accompanied by a caption that appeared to use a homophobic slur to compare Putin's "voters" with LGBT people, adding "they say there are a lot of them, but I don't know any".

It's unclear exactly which image the ministry is talking about - but it is believed to be similar to one used on signs during protests against Russia's anti-gay laws.

Gay Putin memes have proliferated as Putin has reduced freedoms related to speech and sexuality in recent years.

Mocking image portrays Russian leaders as a gay couple - President Vladimir Putin on the left, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev on the right.

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"Our legislation has, so to say, a certain code defending a citizen's honor and dignity, including those of the president", he told the state-run news agency Tass.

"Kremlin says Putin skilled at brushing off "vulgarities" hurled against him", reads the state-sanctioned headline on that interview.

According to the Moscow Times, the ban follows a verdict by a regional court in May 2016.

Do not post this picture, which Putin hates. Those include an article about a theoretical coup, which landed a philosophy professor in detention. By 2015, the government began cracking down on websites of Putin critics, restricting even anonymous blogs.

Russian Federation has banned a picture depicting President Vladimir Putin in heavy make up as "extremist".

Tsvetkov was also charged in connection with other images, including openly racist and anti-immigrant ones, posted on his Vkontakte account, which was later suspended.

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