Watch: Madonna Says She Never Paid Russia's $1M Fine for Gay Rights Speech

Tuesday July 21, 2020

Madonna accepts the advocate for change award at the 30th annual GLAAD Media Awards at the New York Hilton Midtown in New York.
Madonna accepts the advocate for change award at the 30th annual GLAAD Media Awards at the New York Hilton Midtown in New York.  (Source:Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

Madonna took to Instagram on Sunday to tell fans that she was fined $1 million by the Russian government for her outspoken gay rights speech she gave at a concert in the country eight years ago — and that she's yet to pay the expensive penalty.

The pop star shared a clip from the speech, where she told the audience in St. Petersburg, Russia that they have the power to make a difference in the world through love.

"I am here to say that the gay community and gay people, here and all around the world, have the same rights to be treated with dignity, with respect, with tolerance, with compassion, with love," Madonna said in the video. "Are you with me?"

Madonna captioned the video, "I made this speech at a concert in St. Petersburg 8 years ago. I was fined 1 million dollars by The government for supporting the Gay community. I never paid."

In 2013, around the time Madonna held her concert, Russia approved federal laws commonly known as "gay propaganda laws" that criminalized sharing LGBTQ materials that support same-sex relationships to minors.

Check out Madonna's Instagram post below.


[H/T NBC News]

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