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Lt. Dan Choi, other gay activists arrested during Moscow protest; U.S. urges Russia to 'safeguard freedoms' (with video)

Army Lt. Dan Choi, discharged under Don't Ask, Don't Tell, was among 30 protestors (including 18 gay activists) arrested Saturday during a gay-rights demonstration in Moscow.

"WE WILL NOT DISAPPEAR!" Choi posted Sunday on his Facebook page.

From the White House on Sunday:

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE

Office of the Spokesman

For Immediate Release May 29, 2011

2011/855

STATEMENT BY MARK TONER, DEPUTY SPOKESPERSON

Concern about Freedom of Assembly in Russia

We note with concern that in Moscow on Saturday, May 28, a peaceable demonstration of Russians advocating for the rights of gays and lesbians, joined by international supporters, was forcefully disrupted by counter-protesters, and that Russian security forces then detained people from both groups, including American citizens. Some protestors were seriously injured according to media reports.

Freedom of assembly is a fundamental right all members of the OSCE committed to, including in the Moscow declaration and as recently as the Astana summit. As nationwide legislative elections approach, constraints on the ability of Russian citizens peacefully to gather and express their views will be closely watched in evaluating the integrity of the electoral process. We call on Russian authorities to work with municipal officials to find better ways to safeguard these fundamental freedoms.

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I remember the first "Urban" weekend and it was scary. What a change from the prior year that was full of gay partys with clean, law abiding guests. And what's up with not being able to see the utube clip. Is there something in it that someone is afraid to show us? I never go to the beach on Memorial or Labor day weekends anymore.

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