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Rammstein’s guitarists kiss onstage during Russia performance to protest anti-LGBTQ laws

A pair of musicians in the German heavy-metal band Rammstein on Tuesday defied Russia’s anti-LGBTQ policies by sharing a kiss during a concert in Moscow.

Guitarists Paul Landers and Richard Kruspe kissed onstage as the band performed “Ausländer,” German for “foreigner,” The Independent reported

“Russia, we love you,” the band said in an Instagram post accompanied by an image of the musicians’ kiss. 

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Россия, мы любим тебя! Photos: @jenskochphoto

A post shared by Rammstein (@rammsteinofficial) on

The moment gained international attention considering Russia’s policies banning “the promotion of non-traditional sexual relationships” to youth. The country in 2013 adopted a law that barred “the promotion of non-traditional sexual relationships” to minors. 

The policy, known as the “gay propaganda” law, was declared discriminatory by a European court in 2017, according to The Washington Post. 

The European Court of Human Rights said in a statement at the time that the policy “reinforced stigma and prejudice and encouraged homophobia, which was incompatible with the values of a democratic society.” 

The display from Rammstein band members also came about a week after an LGBT activist, Yelena Grigoryeva, was stabbed and killed. Grigoryeva, 41, had reportedly been listed on a website that encouraged people to “hunt” for advocates of gay rights. 

Rammstein has continually expressed support for the LGBT community during its Europe Stadium Tour.  Frontman Till Lindemann waved an LGBT rainbow flag while surfing in an inflatable boat during a show in Poland, The Rolling Stone reported. 

The band is slated to continue its tour in St. Petersburg on Friday.


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