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14 Feb, 2022 13:57

Russian MP demands Valentine’s Day ban

Vitaly Milonov calls for February 14 celebrations to be forbidden
Russian MP demands Valentine’s Day ban

Russia should ban the celebration of St. Valentine’s Day because it is a western “cult” and has no place in the country’s institutions, a controversial MP proposed on Monday.

Speaking in an interview with news agency RIA Novosti, Vitaly Milonov denounced the recognition and celebration of February 14, declaring observance of the day and any corresponding activities particularly inappropriate in both places of education and governmental workplaces.

“Neither in schools nor in state institutions should this holiday be recognized. It is not a good decision to hold such events in our country,” the politician stated.

Falling annually on February 14, Valentine’s Day originated as a Christian feast day honoring one or two early Christian martyrs named St. Valentine, and, through continued folk traditions, has today become a worldwide cultural, religious, and commercial celebration of love.

Lovers old and new, partners, couples, and friends typically enjoy an exchange of gifts on this day, which may be spent partaking in romantic activities in the company of a loved one.

According to Milonov, however, Valentine’s Day is “a cargo cult of well-fed Western life.”

However, while the MP might condemn the festivities, the popularity of Valentine’s Day in Russia has quadrupled in the past 15 years, as reported by RIA Novosti on Sunday, with certain sections of the retail sector, in particular, reaping the benefits. Last week, Aliexpress Russia reported a significant increase in purchases of skincare and beauty products, manicure sets, candles, and jewelry in the days leading up to February 14.

This latest comment isn’t the first controversial statement made by Milonov, who is most well known for his homophobic stance on LGBT issues. Last year, he called for gay men to be “sterilized” like stray cats, dubbing homosexuals the “lowest stage of development of the animal world.”