Authorities in Moscow have said they will deal “firmly” with any attempts to hold gay Pride events in the city this month.

News agency RIA Novosti reports that City Hall spokesman Leonid Krutakov said: “There have been no official applications for permission to hold gay parades during the May holidays and all attempts to hold such events will be firmly stopped by the authorities.”

Activists in Moscow have been denied permission to hold a gay Pride march every year since May 2006.

Moscow city officials have said the events would “endanger public order and cause negative reaction of the majority of the population.”

In May 2006, more than 120 people were arrested after campaigners attempted to hold the capital’s first gay rights rally.

Moscow Mayor Yury Luzhkov has branded gay parades “Satanic” in the past.

The Russian Orthodox Church and far-right groups have said they will prevent any attempt to hold a march in support of gay rights in Russia.