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Almaty Mayor admits gays exist in his city

01 november 2013, 17:55
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©Reuters
©Reuters
Akim (mayor) of Almaty city Akhmetzhan Yessimov has admitted the existence of gays in the city, Tengrinews reports.

"Concerning gays, the life is changing and Almaty is a big city. There are a lot of all sorts of odds and ends in here, that is why I can't say there is no gay community in our nation. But what can we do if some people are inclined (to being gay)," Akhmatzhan Yessimov said during today's briefing at the Central Communications Service quarters answering journalists' questions about the possibility of closing down gay clubs in Almaty.

According to the Mayor the city administration should step up education work beginning with kindergartens.

One of the journalists complained that there were 20 gay clubs in Almaty city alone, and said that the city's hippodrome - where baiga Kazakh national horsetrading competitions could be held and young people could be educated in the best spirit and traditions of the Kazakh nation - was not working its regular hours, while most of the gay clubs were operating quite regularly.

Earlier a member of the Majilis (Lower Chamber of the Parliament) Aldan Smaiyl gave some statistics on the number of gay clubs in Kazakhstan.

"We are raising this issue for a reason. You know well what is happening in our society. There are 4 gay clubs working publicly in Astana, around 10 or more clubs are out their in Almaty, similar clubs exist in other large cities of Kazakhstan as well," Smaiyl said during a meeting of a work group on the bill on Protection of Children from Information that Causes Health and Development Harm.

Months earlier several members of the Kazakhstan Parliament have called to ban of limit sex relations and gay rights in Kazakhstan.

“I believe it necessary not only to enhance the article 11 of the Family Code (persons not allowed to marry), but also to develop a draft law eradicating same-sex relations, and close the nightclubs everywhere,” Member of the Majilis Bakhytbek Smagul read out his address to Kazakhstan Prime-Minister Serik Akhmetov.

Before that Majilis deputy Aldan Smaiyl requested to put through a bill banning homosexuality 'propaganda' in Kazakhstan. His colleague Kairbek Suleimenov said that Kazakhstan needed mechanisms for countering trends like same-sex relationships and marriages that were becoming widespread in Western Europe.

The anti-gay wave in Kazakhstan started after Russia adopted a law prohibiting gay 'propaganda' among minors several months ago. The document provides for fines from 4 to 5 thousand rubles (around $150) for the offense.


By Baybek Konyrov

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