Organizers complain to ECHR about gay parade ban
MOSCOW, May 2 - RAPSI. The organizers of a gay parade have filed a complaint with the European Court of Human Rights on the Moscow authorities' decision to ban the event in May 2011, gay rights activist Nikolai Alexeyev told the Russian Legal Information Agency (RAPSI/rapsinews.com).
Alexeyev said Moscow Deputy Mayor Lyudmila Shvetsova prohibited the event from being held on Bolotnaya Square last May. Later, the city authorities refused to give consent to stage the parade on Revolution Square. Eventually, the organizers held the parade without having received the appropriate authorization from the Mayor's Office. Police detained several activists.
The organizers attempted to challenge the ban in court. However, the Tverskoy District Court held against them on August 19. The Moscow City court upheld the decision on November 14. The applicants then sought to have the case reviewed by the court's presidium, but their request was turned down in early April.
Subsequently, Alexeyev appealed to the Strasbourg court, claiming that the authorities breached articles 11, 13 and 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights on the right to freedom of assembly and association, the right to an effective remedy before national authorities and the prohibition of discrimination. They also sought to recover 100,000 euro.
In October 2010, the court recognized 2006, 2007 and 2008 bans on gay parades as invalid. The ruling came into force in 2011. Alexeyev alleges that although the authorities paid damages, "so far they have failed to enforce the verdict in terms of the legal position set forth by the judges."