News | Nikolai Alexeyev | Russia

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Leading Russian Gay Activist Arrested, Whereabouts Unknown

Russia's leading gay activist, Nikolai Alekseev, was arrested at the Moscow airport as he was about to board a plane to Geneva. His whereabouts are unknown and Russian officials have offered no explanation for his arrest.

UK Gay News reports: Alexeev

"In a statement from gay activists in Moscow, just received by UK Gay News, the Russian border police asked Swiss Air Lines to cancel his boarding pass and to offload his luggage from the plane, causing a 30-minute delay to the flight’s departure. '[Mr. Alekseev] had time to call a friend as well as the news agency Interfax,' the statement read. 'Reports of his arrest have been republished in the evening through the Russian media. As he told his friends and the media, no explanation was given to him on the motive of his arrest. A group of three activists from GayRussia led by Nikolai Baev went to the airport to try to locate Nikolai. The airport police told them that Nikolai was not retained by the airport police and one police officer suggested that he was being interrogated by the FSB (ex-KGB) at its headquarter in Lubyanka (Central Moscow).'"

The Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation (FSB) is refusing to answer questions.

Gay Russia adds:

The activists of GayRussia applied yesterday for a picket scheduled for Sept 21 on the anniversary of Moscow Mayor Luzhkov with the title "Luzhkov - Gomiki. The English translation for Gomiki is Faggot. The activists wanted to protest a Court decision which dismissed their complained against the Mayor who said that gays are "gomiki" in a TV interview in June 2009.

A recent law passed by the Russian Parliament and signed-off by President Medvedev in July of this year allows the FSB to echo Soviet practices. The punishment for ignoring a warning was unclear, but 15-day jail sentences are envisaged for "obstructing an FSB officer's duties".

This new provision was denounced by human rights activists as an attempt to prevent human rights activists to organize rallies and public protest by preemptively arresting them.

The headquarter of the Moscow Police said tonight to Human Rights activists Ludmila Alekseeva that Nikolai Alekseev is not registered within their database. The FSB denied to answer tonight. No more information is expected before tomorrow morning.

Under Russian law, enforcement authorities have no right to detain people for long periods without charges and without giving reasons for the detention, but this time has already expired at 10pm Moscow time.

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Comments

  1. Beasts. Let's hope he's not dead. The only way to deal with a russian thug is with extreme brutality and no hesitation. Unrelenting violence until death. There is no reasoning with them, or rational compromise. It is all or nothing, and extreme bursts of violence and threats thereof are all that they respond to (and in the case of russia, it is a thug state)...most piss poor, primitive people are like this, though (not to single russia out). There is a reason why russia has such a depressing history...it's because of the quality of its people.

    Posted by: TANK | Sep 15, 2010 6:30:17 PM


  2. This is very troubling

    Posted by: ravewulf | Sep 15, 2010 6:46:45 PM


  3. The quality of its people... Pushkin, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, Bulgakov... thug trash.

    On a serious note, though, Alexeev does have the support of many many people abroad. This is not something to sneeze at in Russia. According to his facebook page, Volker Beck has already called, Tatchell can't be far behind. I don't think they'd risk holding him too long (I hope!).

    Posted by: KevinVT | Sep 15, 2010 7:20:14 PM


  4. Exceptions to the rule do not the rule make.

    Posted by: TANK | Sep 15, 2010 7:26:02 PM


  5. Russian embassy 202-298-5700

    Posted by: paul canning | Sep 15, 2010 7:53:53 PM


  6. Getting that phone call out may very well be the only thing that saves that mans life.

    This seems like the kind of thing that if the media didn't know he was missing, he wouldn't come back.

    Posted by: Sgt.Sausagepants | Sep 15, 2010 7:54:04 PM


  7. Funny, I've hung out with lots of Russians, and my boyfriend used to be married to one, and they're the furthest thing imaginable from thugs. But I'm sure anyone making a broad assessment about the "quality" of the Russian people has spent a lot of time there and knows best and wouldn't be simplistic just cause, you know, it's easy and ignorant.

    Now, the leadership of Russia is currently made up of thugs, that much is true. Whatever they've done to Nikolai Alekseev is a disgrace, but, fortunately, he is extremely well-known, media savvy himself, and is connected to all kinds of people who are in the media and will continue to make a huge noise about this.

    Posted by: Ernie | Sep 15, 2010 9:06:03 PM


  8. I hope he survives uninjured and that they immediately release him. Those who make the path to others to follow, we must support.

    Posted by: Lexxvsl | Sep 15, 2010 9:29:36 PM


  9. Oh, Russia. I don't understand this thing where Russia and China think you can only have economic success or respect if you disrespect human rights. Let's hope they let him go and he makes it to safety. Actually, let's hope Russians learn to ditch their medieval homophobia.

    Posted by: Derek Pearce | Sep 15, 2010 9:30:34 PM


  10. You're right, it was a sweeping generalization born of emotion rather than reason. Dostoevsky, in my estimation, is one of the greatest writers since Shakespeare. My great grandparents were russian and ukrainian. My great grandfather was a very russian looking person--huge bear of a man...I'm not so it's funny to think I came from that. He had a scar running practically the length of his body from a cossack's blade. He survived a pogrom that his sister and two brothers and father unfortunately didn't. After he took his vengeance out on the people responsible, he had to leave, and came to the united states.

    But yes, it's not right to generalize in that way. I apologize to myself...for doing it.

    Posted by: TANK | Sep 15, 2010 9:53:03 PM


  11. FSB: .... You have reached the FSB Lubyanka; your call is important to us; If you know your parties extension,please dial it now, if not, please stay on the line and listen carefully because our menu has changed:

    ...For information on the arrests of political prisoners...press 1 now

    ...To reach someone in interrogations...press 2 now

    [BEEP]...You have pressed 1, if this is correct...press 2 now

    [BEEP]...For information on the arrests of enemies of President Putin...press 1 now... For Gomiki...press 2 now

    [BEEP]...You have pressed 2; if this is correct...press 1 now

    [BEEP]...I'm sorry I do not understand...I think you said 4; if this is correct, please press 3 now,if not please press 8 now

    [BEEP!]...I'm sorry, I do not understand ....

    [BEEP!!!]....I'm sorry, I do not understand...

    Thank you...Good bye [CLICK]

    Posted by: ratbastard | Sep 15, 2010 10:02:13 PM


  12. This was how it all began for Russian civil rights activist Natalia Estemirova before she was found dead days later. Another one Anna Politkovskaya was shot dead in her elevator in 2006 which remains a cold case. Russia remains a politically deadly atmosphere for those who seek/highlight civil rights for others.

    Posted by: SSCHIEFRSHA | Sep 15, 2010 11:37:57 PM


  13. Thank you, Towleroad, for publicizing the plight of these brave people who risk their lives and freedom for justice in Russia. Unfortunately, our own country seems to be turning toward the darkness again, with openly-hostile and bigoted candidates being lauded without question by the press and promoted to the highest offices of the land. Where will it all end? Let's just say my passport is in order.

    Posted by: niles | Sep 16, 2010 2:05:04 AM


  14. also.. russians are hung, that explains my heritage.

    Posted by: Tank | Sep 16, 2010 10:46:20 AM


  15. Now, stop it, Tank. I count on you to be annoying, and then you get all likable and funny on me, and it's sooooo confusing!

    P.S. Updates about Nikolai are being posted on his Facebook page. He was able to send a text message to those who are posting for him.

    Posted by: Ernie | Sep 16, 2010 11:16:00 AM


  16. I didn't post at 10:46. I take great offense to that comment...

    But thugs...are thugs.

    Posted by: TANK | Sep 16, 2010 1:53:05 PM


  17. This is Putin's way of doing business. Medvedev is nothing more than his puppet. The more things change in Russia, the more Russians are f'd!

    Posted by: mad1026 | Sep 16, 2010 2:31:58 PM


  18. SR Nikolai Alekseev MI NOMBRE ES MARTHA FERNANDEZ DE PERU Y RECURRO A UD A PESAR DE QUE UD NO ENTIENDA MI IDIOMA PERO EL TEMA ES QUE TENGO MI HIJO EN ELJUZGADO DE GARGANISIKIY DESDE EL 12 DE OCTUBRE Y NO SABEMOS NADA DE EL Y TODOS SUS AMIGOS LO HAN ABANDONADO EL ES TRAVESTI Y ESO EMPEORA SU SITUACION POR FAVOR SI UD NOS PUDIESE AYUDAR O QUE PODEMOS HACER O SABER COMO ESTA EL LE PEDIMOS SE CONTACTE A ESTE CORREO MAFERSZ1@HOTMAIL.COM

    Posted by: MARTHA FERNANDEZ MENDOZA | Nov 3, 2010 12:40:35 AM


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