Russia: Despite anti-gay law, twin toilets unveiled at Sochi Olympics venue

Joseph McCormick January 22, 2014
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A photograph taken of a twin men’s toilet at a Sochi Winter Olympics venue in Russia has caused a storm of controversy on Twitter.

Some raised serious questions on how the budget for the games had been spent, while others referred back to the gay rights controversy since a Russian law was introduced last year banning the “promotion of non-traditional relationships”.

A picture of the toilets was originally tweeted by BBC’s Steve Rosenberg from the Biathlon Centre.

“Seeing double in the Gentlemen’s Loo at the Olympic Biathlon Centre,” he said in his original tweet which was picked up by opposition leader Alexei Navalny.

Another twitter user joked: “This is how they understand the needs of sexual minorities”, while Navalny took the image slightly more seriously.

He questioned what the budget had been spent on, saying: “This is a men’s toilet in a Sochi Olympics media centre for 1.5bn roubles (£27 million).”

The budget for the games is said to be 1,700 billion roubles (£30 billion).

Having been completed almost two years ago with investment from Russian state gas company Gazprom, a company representative told Interfax at the time: “The building is one of the biggest and most comfortable structures of its kind in the world.”

This recent development raised many questions, however, with one Twitter using joking: “Tear off some paper before you sit down.”

More: anti-gay laws, David Cameron, Europe, G20, Moscow, putin, Russia, Russia, sochi olympics, Sochi Winter Olympics, Sochi Winter Olympics 2014, St Petersburg, Stephen Fry, Vladimir Putin, Winter Olympics, Winter Olympics 2014

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