People around the world shared smooches on Sunday to protest against Russia’s recent crackdown on its LGBT community.
The global kiss-In, dubbed “To Russia With Love,” drew same-sex couples to the front steps of Montreal’s Russian consulate over the weekend.
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Rallies were staged at 3 p.m. in major cities across the globe including Vancouver, New York City, Washington D.C., Paris, Athens, Barcelona and Helsinki.
Protesters were also expected to gather in Toronto at 6 p.m., at Yonge and Dundas Square.
The international rallies come in light of recent laws enacted in Russia, which are meant to restrict members of the LGBT community from living openly. The laws also threaten to arrest openly-gay tourists on holiday during the Olympics.
As athletes around the world prepare for the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics, kiss-in organizers say they hope the rallies will pressure the International Olympic Committee and local governments to call on Russian President Vladimir Putin to “stop the human rights violations of LGBTQ people.”
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