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Kyrgyz Parliamentary Committee Backs Draft Antigay Bill

A parliamentary committee in Kyrgyzstan on October 7 approved the language of draft legislation that would ban what it calls gay "propaganda."

Kurmanbek Dyikanbaev, a co-author of the bill, told RFE/RL the proposal will be sent to parliament for debate and would become law if approved by the parliament and signed by Kyrgyzstan's president.

The bill calls for "propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations" to be punished by up to one year in jail.

It says journalists found guilty of "propagating" homosexual relations also will be held accountable.

The bill also bans the creation of groups that defend the rights of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community.

Dyikanbaev told RFE/RL the proposal aims to preserve "traditional family values" and stands against the legalization of same-sex relations that he says is being "propagated by the West."