News of South Karelia, Finland

Two Russian Homosexuals Awaiting Asylum in Lappeenranta
January 19, 2015
Lappeenrannan Uutiset

vastaanottokeskusThe men are awaiting asylum at the Konnonsuo reception center. Photo by Janne Koivisto

Two Russian gay men are seeking asylum in Finland.

They are currently waiting at the Konnonsuo reception center in Lappeenranta, where they have been since September.

According to the men, they have been treated very badly in Russia. In recent years, Russia has made laws against homosexuals more severe.

The men are 24 and 36 years of age.

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Lappeenranta Uutiset has asked its readers whether gay refugees should be granted asylum.

As of five p.m. Finnish time on January 21, 2015, 81% of readers who responded to the poll said that yes, gay refugees should be granted asylum.

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Time Is Not on Their Side

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If the following article makes no sense to you, don’t worry. It makes no sense to me, either.

MOSCOW, October 11 – Reverting to Winter Time especially for the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics would cost the Russian budget in excess of $300 million, the head of the organizing committee said Friday.

Russia used to set its clocks back by an hour in the winter, as is done in the rest of Europe, but canceled the practice in 2011 under former President Dmitry Medvedev.

The International Olympic Committee was among those who called for a return to Winter Time to bring Russia’s broadcast schedules closer to the West for February’s Winter Games.

President Vladimir Putin ruled that out earlier this year, and Sochi 2014 chief executive Dmitry Chernyshenko elaborated on the reasons why in an address to lawmakers in Moscow on Friday.

“We forecast, other than the reputational risk and discomfort to our athletes, logistical issues and financial risks,” were winter time to be reinstated, Chernyshenko said.

“The extra expenditure needed from the federal budget to compensate international broadcasters who might lose advertising contracts in the event of a time change will lead to penalties, and we will have to compensate for it. The sum of the risks could exceed $300 million,” he said.

Reverting to winter time, he said, would lead to “fatal changes in the timetables” of Sochi’s logistics, including transport and cargo schedules.

The Games, Russia’s first Winter Olympics, are set to run February 7-23.

Source: RIA Novosti

Image courtesy of Hymy Huulet Facebook page and Comrade Tiina. The cartoon reads (in Finnish):

“I changed the clocks to winter time.”

“It’s nice to know that at three in the morning.”

Because of Russia’s inexplicable rejection of winter time, there is a two-hour difference between Estonia and Finland and the neighboring Russian regions of Pskov, Novgorod, Murmansk, Karelia, Leningrad Region and St. Petersburg during half the year.