This weekend, Putin said Sochi is bribe-free and gay-friendly.
In less than a month, the world will turn its attention to the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. As the Russian government gets ready for the event, the gay community is preparing in a slightly different way.
We traveled to Russia to investigate the effects of the country's state-sanctioned homophobia. In part one, we explore Moscow's gay taxi service, the rise of homophobic vigilante groups, and meet Yulia, who runs LGBT self-defense classes.
When Russian President Vladimir Putin banned gay "propaganda" in June last year, Russia's LGBT community went from being a stigmatized fringe group to full-blown enemies of the state.