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Rediff News  All News  » Sports » Russia to arrest athletes who violate anti-gay laws at Winter Olympics

Russia to arrest athletes who violate anti-gay laws at Winter Olympics

August 14, 2013 16:40 IST

Russia's interior ministry has confirmed that athletes at the Winter Olympics will be arrested if they breach Russia's controversial gay propaganda laws.

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Friends Kelly Linley (left) and Katie Greiswold smile as they are photographed during a rally in support of the United States Supreme Court decision on marriage rightAccording to, the ministry, which is responsible for the country's police expressed that the law enforcement agencies can have no qualms with people who do not commit homosexual acts, do not conduct any kind of provocation and take part in the Olympics peacefully.

Earlier this year Russian president Vladimir Putin enacted a ban on the promotion of non-traditional sexual lifestyles to minors, which could include holding a rainbow flag or attending gay rights marches, the report said.

However, the ministry said that the suggestion gay athletes would be prevented from taking part was totally unfounded and contrived.

Earlier this month British actor and broadcaster Stephen Fry wrote an open letter to British PM David Cameron, International Olympic Committee president Jacques Rogge and Sebastian Coe urging them to boycott the Winter Games, and the prime minister rejected the appeal, however, saying he preferred to protest against the anti-gay laws by attending and lodging objections in person, the report added.

Photograph: Mike Blake/Reuters