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The former Soviet state of Moldova has overturned its ‘homosexual propaganda’ law, just months after it was first enacted.
The law was almost identical to the Russian law banning the dissemination of information on lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex (LGBTI) issues. But the Court of Appeals in the country’s second biggest city, Balti, said that the ban, which was adopted in May, was unconstitutional and that it violated human rights.
Evelyne Paradis, Executive Director of ILGA-Europe, said: ‘This is a very important and significant development. Moldovan parliamentarians made a right decision to abolish a law which is discriminatory and contradicts their country’s international human rights commitments and aspirations for European integration.’
‘We sincerely hope that the Moldovan development will become an example to a number of other European countries like Russia, Ukraine, Latvia and Lithuania where similar laws have been already adopted, proposed or being discussed.’
Laws banning ‘homosexual propaganda’ and limiting freedom of expression of LGBTI people were declared incompatible with the European Convention on Human Rights by the Venice Commission and condemned by the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly.
According to ILGA-Europe’s Rainbow Europe Index (May 2013), Moldova came 46th among 49 European countries in terms of laws and policies affecting the human rights of LGBTI people.