Twenty-seven Nobel laureates and British actor Ian McKellen have written an open letter to Russian President Vladmir Putin urging him to repeal a law seen as discriminatory against homosexuals, according to "The Independent
The Nobel laureates come from the fields of science and the arts, and include novelist J.M. Coetzee and Mairead Maguire, winner of the 1976 Nobel Peace Prize.
The Russian law, passed in June, bans the "propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations" among minors.
It echoes legislation passed locally in a number of Russian regions.
The letter states that "many senior members of the international scientific community show solidarity with politicians, artists, sports people, and many others who have already expressed their abhorrence for the Russian government’s actions against its gay citizens."
It says its aim is to encourage Moscow to "embrace the 21st century humanitarian, political, and inclusive democratic principles which Mikhail Gorbachev worked so hard to achieve."