International Solidarity with Feminist and LGBTQ+ Activists in Russia!
Russian artist and LGBTQ activist, Yulia Tsvetkova, has been under house arrest since November 2019. On June 8th, she went to court facing the charge of the criminal distribution of “pornography” and faces up to six years in prison. Her “crime” was that she posted abstract and cartoonish drawings of women in a “body positive” VKontakte group called “Vagina Monologues.”
In the last few months, dozens of other Russian activists have also been arrested. On June 27th alone, 40 activists from the Russian group, Sotsialisticheskaya Feministskaya Alternativa (SFA) were arrested in Moscow, with another 3 arrested in St. Petersburg. The Russian government is trying to lock up avowed feminists like Yulia and others in order to hide the prevalence of sexual harassment as well as domestic, homophobic and police violence in Russia.
SFA, together with ROSA - International Socialist Feminists and ISA (International Socialist Alternative), called for protests and solidarity actions on August 14th. Actions took place in Austria, the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, Mexico, Ireland North and South, Britain, Canada, Australia and Czech Republic, many in front of Russian embassies, as well, of course, as in Russia itself. Below are some pictures and videos from around the world featuring these actions.
While it is unclear what the result of Yulia Tsvetkova’s case will be, international solidarity can play a key role in putting pressure on the Russian regime to release her and other activists.