August 8, 2013

Reuters - Russia's sports minister Vitaly Mutko on Thursday told world athletics championship contenders to "relax" about his country's anti-gay propaganda law and said their private lives were safe during the Aug. 10-18 Moscow event.

The recently-passed legislation outlawing gay propaganda has led to worldwide protests, with even U.S. President Obama weighing into the debate.

When asked how it would affect athletes competing in the championships beginning on Saturday and next year's winter Olympics in Sochi, Mutko was dismissive of any concerns.

"I want to ask you to calm down as in addition to this law we have a constitution that guarantees all citizens a private life," he told a packed news conference in a Moscow hotel.