November 16, 2013
Promoters that brought Lady Gaga to Russia to perform last year have been fined 20,000 rubles ($615) for violating a controversial law banning the promotion of homosexuality to minors.
A spokesman for the Trade Union of Russian Citizens, an activist group that has come to prominence for its typically jingoistic celebration of conservative values, said a court in St. Petersburg on Thursday upheld a ruling passed in May.
The original case was brought to court by an activist of the organization that went to the concert in St. Petersburg with her young daughter in December.
The woman appears to have taken exception to Lady Gaga speaking during her performance in support of gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transsexuals.
Lady Gaga, which is the stage name of 27-year old US singer Stefani Germanotta, has long been a vocal advocate for the rights of the gay community.
Trade Union of Russian Citizens spokeswoman Darya Dedova said Lady Gaga had harmed the well-being of children by exposing them to what she says is harmful information.
“We have managed to prove that the promoters were wrong and acted in breach of Russian laws, especially those important ones concerning the protection of children,” Dedova said.
The promoter, a company called Planeta Plus, was not immediately available for a comment.
A law banning gay “propaganda” among minors came into force in Russia last June. Critics of the law believe it will increasingly be used to clamp down on the homosexual community and further entrench widely held prejudices in Russian society.