Russian President Vladimir Putin honored a lawmaker, who's had major involvement with the country's controversial "homosexual propaganda" law, with the highest civilian decoration of the state, Gay Star News reports.
Putin awarded Vitaly Milonov, deputy of the Legislative Assembly of St. Petersburg, Russia, the Order "For Merit to the Fatherland," second degree, for his "legislative activity and many years of honest work," according to an official Russian government website.
The honor is given to civilians and military members for "outstanding services to the state" or for "great contributions to the defense of the Fatherland."
Milonov helped create the anti-gay measure in St. Petersburg before Putin signed a similar bill into law in 2013. The so-called "homosexual propaganda" law bans the promotion of "non-traditional" relationships among minors. The lawmaker has been a leading figure in the attack against Russia's LGBT community. He's been vocal about silencing LGBT people and has even been tied to violence against LGBT people. Milonov also made headlines for taking issue with Madonna performing in Russia.
In June, shortly after the U.S. Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage in all 50 states, the lawmaker took aim at Facebook and the website's rainbow filter app, requesting Russia's media watchdog group to block Facebook, calling the pro-gay marriage feature a "flagrant violation" of the country's propaganda law as minors can access Facebook.
"It is a crude violation of Russian legislation. Facebook has no age limits, it is impossible to control how many minors are there," said the regional member of parliament for St. Petersburg, in a radio interview, according to the AFP. "That is why it would be completely normal to pull the plug on Facebook in Russia."