WASHINGTON, August 29 (RIA Novosti) – A Russian TV newsman who was fired after announcing on the air that he is gay has called on opponents of Russia’s controversial law banning the promotion of “non-traditional relationships” to minors to turn the upcoming Winter Olympics in Sochi into a “festival of tolerance.”
“I am against any kind of boycott,” Anton Krasovsky, who anchored a news program on Russia’s KontrTV until he was sacked earlier this year, said in an interview with US entertainment magazine, Variety.
“On the contrary, the Sochi Olympics should be converted into a festival of tolerance. The colors of the national uniforms should be changed to rainbow, rainbow flags should be taken together with national ones, and people should cross the stadium with their partners,” he said.
Krasovsky said in the interview, which appears in the Aug. 27 issue of Variety, that he thinks the Kremlin was taken aback by the international outcry over what he called the “anti-gay law”, which was signed by President Vladimir Putin in June.
It “wasn’t supposed to provoke such a hue and cry. No one expected such a worldwide response,” he said.
“People in the Kremlin feel uncomfortable about being involved in this matter, but they can’t back down,” he said.
Krasovsky came out on the air early this year, saying at the end of a news program that he anchored: “I’m gay, and I’m just the same person as you, my dear audience, as President Putin, as Prime Minister Medvedev and the deputies of our Duma.”
He was fired and footage of his on-air statement was deleted from KontrTV’s YouTube page and website.