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Vladimir Putin bans all ‘LGBT propaganda’ in far-reaching move

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Russian President Vladimir Putin signed legislation banning all LGBT ‘propaganda’ on Sunday, according to Russian media.

The far-reaching bill prohibits the creation or sharing of content depicting nontraditional sexual relations, gender reassignment and pedophilia in a positive lights, according to state-run media. The law reportedly extends to social media platforms, as well as mass media like films and advertisement.

The law also has a provision pertaining to minors and empowers to country’s media watchdog to implement systems preventing minors from viewing such content.

The law went into effect the same day it was signed, on Sunday.

Putin has long waged a political war against the LGBT movement in Russia, and his allies have in the past cited the movement’s success in the U.S. as an excuse for expansive actions.

State Duma Chairman Vyacheslav Volodin, who authored the bill, cited trends in the U.S. and Europe as a reason to pass it in November.

‘He cited data from opinion polls, according to which 16% of Europeans aged 14 to 29 identify themselves as LGBT,’ the Duma reported at the time. ‘And in the U.S. state of Maryland, the number of students who have not decided on their gender due to the promotion of non-traditional relationships has grown almost six times in two years and today makes up 45% of all students in the state.’

The Duma did not cite where it received the polls, and it was not immediately clear if the polls are in fact accurate.

Violations of the new law are mostly punished with fines, ranging from $800 for citizens infringing on the lowest tier to $160,000 for legal entities that infringe on the highest tier, which is pedophilia. 

‘For violation of the ban on propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations or preferences among people of any age, a fine of 50 thousand to 400 thousand rubles for citizens, from 100 thousand to 800 thousand – for officials, from 800 thousand to 5 million or suspension of activities up to 90 days – for legal entities,’ the Duma said. Fines are much higher for pedophilia violations – up to 800,000 rubles for people, 2 million rubles for officials and 10 million rubles for legal entities.

Fox News’ Peter Kasperowicz contributed to this report.

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