October 30, 2014
VALDAI, Russia (AP) - President Vladimir Putin has denied gays face discrimination in Russia, saying that a new law that has drawn protests worldwide does not infringe on their rights.
Putin on Thursday insisted the law bans only "propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations among minors." He argues that it is "no infringement on the rights of sexual minorities."
The law has prompted calls for boycotts of the 2014 Winter Olympics hosted by Russia in Sochi.
Putin says while some European nations have allowed gay marriages, "the Europeans are dying out ... and gay marriages don't produce children."
He added that heterosexual couples should have more children to reverse a population decline, saying "let us make our own choice, as we see it for our country."