The Russian LGBT Sports Federation announced the opening of the Russian Open Games. The Russian Open Games will run from February 26 - March 02, 2014, with the "goal of promoting healthy lifestyles, physical activity and sports among the LGBT community and its supporters. The Games will also, it is hoped, bring together clubs and groups developing different kinds of sports among LGBT people." NBC News reports:
The Russian Open Games are designed to show the world that “we are normal people,” said Konstantin Yablotsky, president of the Russian LGBT Sport Federation, a non-government group. “We are good people. We play sports. We win medals.”
The games will start next Wednesday, three days after the Sochi Olympics, and run for five days. Yablotsky said that organizers have informed Russia’s Ministry of Sport, which has declined to lend its support to the games.
Russia passed a law last year criminalizing the spread of gay “propaganda” to minors, and human rights groups say Russian gays are routinely intimidated and attacked.
Yablotsky, at a small press conference overlooking Olympic Park here, said he is not worried about backlash from the Russian government in part because most events will be held indoors and because all the participants will be adults.