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St. Petersburg Police Launch Probe Into Attack On LGBT Activists

Reports say that several young men used pepper spray to attack LGBT activists who had been rallying in St. Petersburg on August 12.

Police in Russia's second largest city, St. Petersburg, have launched an investigation into an attack on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) activists and journalists after local lawmakers urged them to do so.

The Interior Ministry's directorate in St. Petersburg and the Leningrad region made the announcement on August 15, a day after seven members of the city’s Legislative Assembly called on police to investigate the August 12 attack.

Reports said that several young men in tracksuits used pepper spray to attack the LGBT activists who had been rallying in the city. Some 15 activists and journalists who were covering the rally were injured in the attack.

According to the journalists and lawmakers, police officers were standing not far from the site when the attack took place but did not intervene.

Some journalists have started their own investigations and published photos of the incident on Facebook.

Based on reporting by Interfax and Fontanka