2008-05-04 11:40:00

Gay activists plastered mouths, gathered in park in St. Petersburg

St. Petersburg, May 4, Interfax - Sexual minority groups in St. Petersburg gathered for a rally on Saturday to mark the Day of Silence, despite an official ban.

A gay activist could be seen standing in the center of Chernyshevsky Park with his mouth plastered, and another 15 were seated on a bench, also with plastered mouths, an Interfax correspondent reported.

The action brought together more journalists than participants. It is being guarded by about ten loyal policemen.

Coordinator of the Russian LGBT-net of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transsexuals Igor Petrov told the press that the organizers had applied to the city authorities for a permit to stage a mass Day of Silence action and that they wanted to hand out leaflets in the park urging tolerance.

"The action was banned at the last moment," Petrov said.