STRASBOURG, October 1 (RAPSI) – State Duma speaker Sergei Naryshkin invited members of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) to visit Moscow’s gay clubs, in order to to see first-hand that the rights of sexual minorities are not being violated.

“We have a lot of accomplished people here with non-traditional sexual orientation. They succeed in business, art and any creative sphere… They have the right to safe recreation in Moscow and other Russian cities. There are a lot of gay clubs. I personally have not been in one, but word goes around that people have a good time there,” Naryshkin said during a PACE session.

“If you want confirmation on this, I invite you to come to Moscow. Sadly, I won’t be able to go with you, but I will definitely take care of you,” the State Duma speaker added. The speaker stressed that the people with non-traditional sexual orientations enjoy the same volume of rights as people with traditional sexual orientations. 

On June 30, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed into law a bill banning the promotion of homosexuality toward minors.

The law seeks to levy fines for such offenses from 800,000 rubles ($24,000) to 1 million rubles ($30,500) for legal entities, from 4,000 rubles ($120) to 5,000 rubles ($150) for individuals and from 40,000 rubles ($1,220) to 50,000 rubles ($1,530) for officials. Legal entities may also be suspended for 90 days for disseminating gay propaganda among children.

In a June survey by the state-run VTsIOM pollster, 88 percent of those polled expressed support for a ban on the “propaganda of homosexuality among minors.”