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HindustanTimes Thu,18 Sep 2014

Madonna breaks 'gay propaganda' law

IANS  Moscow, August 11, 2012
First Published: 12:28 IST(11/8/2012) | Last Updated: 12:48 IST(11/8/2012)

A city councilor in Russia's St Petersburg city has accused US pop star Madonna of violating a controversial local law banning "homosexual propaganda" during her concert there.

Vitaly Milonov, author of the law, said the city's "public organisations" will take either the singer or gig organisers to court.

"We have video footage showing there were 12-year-old children there," said Milonov, who belongs to Russia's ruling United Russia party.

But the organisers PMI group said the tickets clearly stated those under 18 were not advised to attend the concert.

During her show in St. Petersburg Thursday, Madonna told her fans that homosexuals had the same rights as anyone elese to be treated with dignity and tolerance.

She took off her shirt to reveal the words "No Fear" written across her back.

The law, signed by St. Petersburg's governor in March, makes it a crime to "disseminate homosexual propaganda" to minors.

Madonna used her Moscow concert on August 7 to speak out in support of three members of the all-female punk group Pussy Riot, on trial for hooliganism.

Representatives from St. Petersburg's non-governmental organisations also filed a complaint with police in which they demanded that Madonna be acknowledged a person who has broken the anti-homosexual propaganda law.

The company that organised Madonna's gig said it was going to sue Milonov, saying his supporters illegally captured photos and videos during the concert without asking for permission to do so.

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