Three Russian gay activists were arrested today under the 'homosexual propaganda' law in the northern city of Arkhangelsk.
Nikolay Alekseev, Alexey Kiselev and Kirill Nepomnyaschiy were arrested and have now been charged and bailed while conducting 'solitary' pickets next to a children's library.
Police had previously allowed 'solitary' pickets but two of the group had earlier unfurled a 20m long rainbow flag outside the regional government building without being arrested (see picture).
They had also held similar 'solitary' protests in the city earlier without incident.
Last month five activists were arrested in Kostroma, North-East of Moscow, as they held protests in the third Russian region to pass a law banning so-called 'propaganda' of homosexuality to minors.
In July 2012 the UN Human Rights Committee will consider the complaint of Irina Fedotova against Russia on the legality of the ban of homosexual propaganda in Ryazan, the first such law, where she was arrested in 2009.
A similar case of Nikolai Baev against Russia is awaiting consideration by the European Court of Human Rights. GayRussia is pushing for the court to expedite consideration of this case.