John Baird Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird has condemned Russia’s anti-gay laws as "hateful", as New Zealand remains silent on the issue. Speaking to the Canadian Press, he said that Ottawa had expressed private concerns to the Russian government on eight occasions, both before and after President Vladimir Putin had signed the ‘anti-propaganda’ bill into law in June. After new comments by Russia's sports minister that the law will definitely be enforced during the Winter Olympics in Sochi next year, Baird says he plans to work with the US and the UK in order to take a stand in pressuring the Russian government into changing the law ahead of the Winter Olympics. "As concerned as we are about the Olympics, that's nothing. That's two, three, four weeks for the athletes and participants and the visitors," Baird told the Canadian Press. "This mean-spirited and hateful law will affect all Russians 365 days of the year, every year. It is an incitement to intolerance, which breeds hate. And intolerance and hate breed violence." While Green MP Jan Logie is pushing for a motion condemning the Russian laws, New Zealand’s Foreign Minister Murray McCully is yet to respond to GayNZ.com Daily News’ questions on the situation.
Credit: GayNZ.com Daily News staff
First published: Friday, 2nd August 2013 - 10:47am
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