Russia bans same-sex couples and singles from gay friendly nations from adopting its children



Pew Research Center

As Russia plays host to the Winter Olympics, it's already attracting plenty of international criticism over its "gay propaganda" laws and the treatment of activists. On Thursday, the country banned adoptions for same-sex couples and single people from nations where same-sex marriage is legal.

So, how many countries will that affect?

At least 18. In recent years, a growing number of governments have legalized same-sex marriage, but they make up a small fraction of the world.

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Scotland, England and Wales, Brazil, France, New Zealand, Uruguay, Denmark, Argentina, Portugal, Iceland, Sweden, Norway, South Africa, Spain, Canada, Belgium, and the Netherlands have all passed laws allowing same-sex marriage.

Mexico and the United States also allow gay marriage in some parts of their territories. However, the ban doesn't alter the ability of US citizens to adopt Russian children. Russia prohibited Americans from adopting its children in 2012.

The new ban is an extension of Russia’s 2013 law barring same-sex couples from adopting domestically.

In an explanatory note obtained by Russian news broadcaster RT, authorities said that the amendment seeks "to guarantee a full and harmonious development for adopted children and to safeguard their psyche and consciousness from possible unwanted influence such as artificial forcing of non-traditional sexual behavior and the suffering, complexes and stresses that, according to psychologists’ studies, are often experienced by kids raised in same-sex families."