On October 10, the Sakharov Center was hosting an annual interactive meeting, “Be open – and your world will get broader." Its participants got together to hear the coming-out stories of the openly LGBT people, and share their own experiences related to recognition of sexual orientation and gender identity as well as coming out to relatives and friends.
However, the participants had to face unexpected problems. Soon after the event began, a few dozen aggressive religious homophobes headed by Enteo (Dmitry Tsorionov) arrived at the Center. They were carrying posters and Orthodox icons and started to scream hateful slogans, trying break into the building through the door and the windows. After their attempts failed, they started to throw eggs at the participants who were on their way to the event, threatening with physical violence whoever was trying to leave the building, including the staff of the Sakharov Center. Meanwhile, the homophobes spoke to media present outside of the building and claimed that the organizers of the meeting are molesting children inside.
After half an hour, a police squad arrived to the venue, but they left very soon without taking any measures to protect the attendees. Only an hour and a half later, after the participants called the Moscow Prosecutor’s office, did another police squad arrive and detain several of the most aggressive homophobic activists.
The police were not interested in providing security as much as scrutinizing the event as such. They inquired about the goals of the meeting, who allowed it to be held, and if it violated the “gay propaganda” law. They did not allow anyone to leave the building until all participants showed proof of identification to ensure that there were no minors present at the venue. And some media quoted police as saying that the attackers were "peaceful." The leader of the homophobic group, Dmitry Enteo, tweeted words of appreciation for this cooperation between the police and the Orthodox activists.
For more information, you can call +7 967 137 02 18, Dmitry Svetlyi, the coordinator of the Moscow LGBT-organization “Rainbow Association”