Sochi mayor says city is 100 percent straight

"We don't have them in our town," says Mayor Anatoly Pakhomov.

By Evan Bleier
The Olympic flag during the Closing ceremony of the London 2012 Summer Olympics (File/UPI/Ron Sachs)
The Olympic flag during the Closing ceremony of the London 2012 Summer Olympics (File/UPI/Ron Sachs) | License Photo

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SOCHI, Russia, Jan. 27 (UPI) -- The mayor of Olympic host city Sochi in Russia said that there are no gay people in town during an interview with BBC Panorama.

When he was asked about homosexuals, Mayor Anatoly Pakhomov said: "No, we just say that it is your business, it's your life. But it's not accepted here in the Caucasus where we live. We do not have them in our city." Pakhomov said gays are welcome to attend the Games if they respect Russian law and don’t “impose their habits on others.”


"Our hospitality will be extended to everyone who respects the laws of the Russian Federation and doesn't impose their habits on others,” Pakhomov said.

Russia passed a law in 2013 banning the promotion of "non-traditional" sexuality. The law makes it a crime to provide minors with information about homosexuality.

President Vladimir Putin asked homosexuals attending the Olympics to "just leave the children alone” last week. "We don't have a ban on non-traditional sexual relations," he said. "We have a ban on the propaganda of homosexuality and pedophilia."

When he was pressed about the issue, Pakhomov admitted he wasn’t positive there were no gay people in Sochi. "I am not sure but I don't bloody know them,” he said.


Pakhomov is a member of Putin's United Russia party. It does sound as if he might be incorrect in his claim.

"There are very many clubs for gay people in Moscow -- in Sochi we have two gay clubs as well,” said drag queen Madame Zhu-Zha. “In some places there's serious prejudice against gay people. In other places it's not as bad."


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