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Russian police arrest women at 'Conchita Wurst' rally

Gay rights activists hold rainbow flags during a protest in Moscow, Russia, on May 31, 2014Riot police on Saturday arrested two women as a small group of gay rights activists tried to stage a rally in central Moscow dedicated to Conchita Wurst, the bearded Austrian transvestite who won this year’s Eurovision song contest. Officers chased away the handful of other activists who gathered for the unsanctioned rally, held in a central Moscow square and symbolically named after the Eurovision winner. The two women were holding a rainbow flag when they were arrested shortly after a Lada car adorned with rainbow flags raced along a nearby street with Wurst’s signature song, “Rise Like A Phoenix,” blaring out at full volume. President Vladimir Putin has made traditional family values and patriotism a key plank of his third term’s agenda, but has denied that gays are mistreated.

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