This LGBT activist has been accused by the authorities of promoting homosexuality among minors in Russia because of an image she posted online of two same sex couples with children.
Yulia Tsvetkova, 26, is a Russian LGBT and feminist activist from the city of Komsomolsk-on-Amur city, Khabarovsk Krai, south-eastern Russia.
The post was made on 15th August 2019 on the VKontakte social media group “COLOR” which is dedicated to supporting LGBT families in Russia. The post reportedly shows two same-sex couples with children.
The group has not been updated since 19th November 2019, one day before Tsvetkova, who is also an artist, was detained in a pornography case.
The official reason for her detention was not revealed but local media report it was directly related to her drawings. The artist led a social media group named “Vagina Monologues” where she posted drawings in support of body positivity and depicted female genital organs.
According to its creator, the social media group is aimed to remove “stigma from the vagina and female physiology as a whole”.
On 23rd November she was put under house arrest and on 15th January 2020 this house arrest was extended for another two months. It is still unclear if she has been formally charged.
She was previously accused of promoting homosexuality on 15th March 2019 because she wanted to hold a festival of fem-activist art. She was banned from holding the festival but received no further punishment.
Other activists have slammed the latest accusations, saying Tsvetkova is being persecuted just for drawings devoted to feminism, body positivity and social equality. Flashmobs were reportedly conducted to protest against her house arrest.
Central European News (CEN) contacted the Russian LGBT Network and its communication manager Svetlana Zakharova said: “We consider all the three cases that Yulia was accused of as absurd. We think this is straight persecution of a specific person and also an attempt to scare people and not let them talk about their sexual orientation.
“All the three cases she was accused of were launched under the Russian Gay Propaganda Law, which we also consider to be discriminative. It looks and sounds like a way to just identify people as ‘better or worse’ just based on their sexual orientation.”
The Russian LGBT Network is a non-governmental LGBT rights organisation that works for the social acceptance and protection of the rights of LGBT people.
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Story By: Gheorghi Caraseni, Sub-Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: Central European News
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