Russia banned adoptions by single people from countries where same-sex marriage is legal.
The new measure comes into law in the middle of a Winter Olympics which gay activists have already tried to derail. The IOC has responded by emphasizing a separation between politics and sports.
The decree, signed by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and posted on the government’s website Thursday, also reiterates a ban on adoptions by same-sex couples who are in unions “recognized as marriages and registered in accordance with the law of a country where such marriages are permitted.”
The measure came as an amendment to a law the Kremlin put in place in July banning same-sex couples from adopting children. That followed by days another law against exposing minors to gay propaganda, or any actions or statements that condone nontraditional relationships.
The latest decree doesn’t affect U.S. citizens because Russia already banned all Americans—regardless of their sexuality or marital status—from adopting Russian children in late 2012. It would apply to single people in other countries, mainly in Europe, where gay marriage has been legalized.
A spokesman for the European Union declined to comment.
Some countries don’t permit gay individuals or couples to adopt, according to the U.S. State Department. And more than a dozen countries don’t allow single people to adopt, according to a 2009 report by the U.N. Department of Economic and Social Affairs.
In an interview ahead of the Sochi Games last month, Russian President Vladimir Putin said gay people were welcome to attend the Olympics so long as they “leave the children in peace.”
So far, there haven’t been any prominent expressions of support for gay rights by athletes competing in Sochi, who have been told by Olympic officials to keep their political views out of the competitions.
Mr. Putin has increasingly crusaded against Western influence and “genderless and infertile” Western tolerance.