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Friday, Oct 31, 2014

World

Homophobic MP urges Russia to ban gay Apple boss

AFP | Friday, Oct 31, 2014

SAINT PETERSBURG - An outspoken Russian lawmaker behind a controversial anti-gay law on Friday called for Apple boss Tim Cook to be banned from entering the country after he became the first CEO of a major US company to reveal he is gay.

"This is a political act aimed at popularising homosexuality," Vitaly Milonov, a regional lawmaker for the ruling United Russia party in the northwestern city of Saint Petersburg, told AFP.

"I believe he should be banned from entering our country. It's obvious he has the intention of imposing his ideas about families, not just of introducing new gadgets," Milonov said.

Milonov told Izvestia daily however that he had no plans to stop using his iPhone, however, saying: "It's not the phone's fault." Cook wrote in an essay for Bloomberg Businessweek magazine that he is "proud to be gay".

President Vladimir Putin last year signed a law banning "propaganda" of homosexual relationships to minors after Milonov initiated a similar local law in Saint Petersburg.

The law was condemned by international politicians and stars including Madonna.

Russia decriminalised homosexuality in 1993 and only in 1999 lifted its classification as a mental illnesses.

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