The Russian Ministry of Justice stated that, “The Interregional Public Movement Russian LGBT Network has been included in the register of unregistered public organizations performing the functions of a foreign agent.” Earlier, in 2016, the Sphere Charitable Foundation for Social and Legal Aid, which is the operator of the Russian LGBT Network, was also recognized as a foreign agent. TASS Russian news agency reported that the movement received about 64 million rubles (close to $880,000 US) from abroad in 2020–2021.
Representatives of the movement claim that they do not know why they have been recognized as a foreign agent, as they “are not engaged in political activities.” The Russian LGBT Network is going to appeal against the Ministry’s decision in court. Meanwhile, this organization is active in Russia with the intention of changing public opinion, holding public events, and participating in initiatives related to the promotion of draft laws that contradict traditional values and destroy the institution of the family. It is very important that the activities of the LGBT Network and its numerous organizations and offshoots that are active in social networks, involving children and teenagers (thereby violating the laws of the Russian Federation), are actually put under control in Russia.
Ria News specified that, “The law on the regulation of foreign agents in Russia was adopted in December 2020. The document stipulates that individuals who receive foreign funding for political activities are recognized as foreign agents. Non-registered political NGOs can obtain the same status. Such organizations and their subdivisions are required to report annually to the Ministry of Justice on their work, income and expenses, and branches of foreign non-profit organizations are now prohibited from registering in residential premises. In addition, they are obligated to provide documents on the basis of which the NGOs conduct their activities, as well as documentary evidence in case such activities were not conducted.”