View Adopted: 2022.03.14
The authors of the communications are N. Alekseev, K.l Nepomnyashchiy, S. Mikhailova, and Y. Yevtushenko, all citizens of the Russian Federation and activists in the area of LGBTI+ issues and human rights. In 2013 and 2014, the authors tried to organize a number of rallies in Moscow, which were all banned by the municipal authorities. The authors claim that their rights under article 21 of the Covenant were violated by the consistent refusal of the Moscow authorities to allow the rallies and their rights under article 26 were violated because the Moscow authorities denied permission to hold rallies organized by sexual minorities, under the pretext of protecting minors and avoiding possible protests from the majority of society.
The Committee found the claims admissible. It decided that the authors did not fail to exhaust domestic remedies since, to date, there has been no court judgment quashing negative decisions of municipal authorities regarding assemblies concerning lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues.
The Committee considers that the State party failed to establish that the restrictions imposed on the authors’ right of peaceful assembly were based on reasonable and objective criteria and that the prohibition therefore amounted to a violation of their rights under articles 21 and 26 of the Covenant. It decides not to consider separately possible violations of article 19 of the Covenant.
The authors request the Committee only to find that their rights under the Covenant have been violated (para. 3.3). Therefore, the Committee considers that the finding of violation in the present Views constitute sufficient remedy for them. The State party is also under an obligation to take all steps necessary to prevent similar violations from occurring in the future. In that connection, the Committee notes that it has dealt with similar cases in respect of the same laws and practices of the State party in a number of earlier communications, and thus the State party should revise its normative framework on public events, consistent with its obligation under article 2 (2), with a view to ensuring that the rights under articles 21 and 26 of the Covenant may be fully enjoyed in the State party.
Deadline: 14 October 2022
More info on the case:
European Human Rights Advocacy Centre - Alekseev v. Russia
The Guardian - Nikolai Alekseev Profile
European Court of Human Rights - Judgment Zhdanov and Others v. Russia: Refusal to register three LGBT organisations was unjustified and discriminatory
Human Rights Committee - K. Nepomnyashchiy v. Russia CCPR/C/123/D/2318/2013
The Moscow Times - LGBT Activist Fined for Breaking 'Gay Propaganda' Law
By: Irene Aparicio