Russia says EU tries to impose 'alien view' of homosexuality
By Adrian Croft
BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Russia, caught in a pre-Sochi Olympic uproar over gay rights, accuses the European Union in a new report of trying to enforce "an alien view" of homosexuality on other countries.
The accusation is contained in a 153-page "Report on the human rights situation in the European Union", in which Moscow hits back at human rights criticism it regularly faces from the West by listing what it sees as rights failings in EU nations.
The report, presented in Brussels on Thursday by Konstantin Dolgov, the Russian foreign ministry's human rights commissioner, said the EU and its 28 member states saw it as a priority to disseminate their "neo-liberal values as a universal lifestyle for all other members of the international community".
"This is particularly evident in their aggressive promotion of the sexual minorities' rights. Attempts have been made to enforce on other countries an alien view of homosexuality and same-sex marriages as a norm of life and some kind of a natural social phenomenon that deserves support at the state level," the English version of the report said.
"Such an approach encounters resistance not only in the countries upholding traditional values, but also in those countries which have always taken a liberal attitude towards queers," it said.
It gave as an example the opposition of many French people to the legalization of same-sex marriage last year.
Russia, preparing to host the Winter Olympics in Sochi next month, has come under fire from human rights activists over a law banning the dissemination of "gay propaganda" among minors.
Activists say the law is part of a crackdown on freedoms under President Vladimir Putin, who travels to Brussels next Tuesday for a summit with EU leaders. Continued...