Russian Men Assault Dutch Diplomat, Write ‘LGBT’ in Lipstick

Attack follows the arrest of a Russian official in The Hague, amid rising tension between the countries

  • Share
  • Read Later
AFP / Getty Images

A man looks in Moscow on October 16, 2013, at a computer screen displaying a photo of a mirror with a drawing of a heart and letters LGBT (standing for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) left by unknown individuals who broke into the flat of Onno Elderenbosch, deputy head of the Netherlands mission in Moscow.

As a senior Dutch diplomat returned to his flat in Moscow on Tuesday, two men posing as electricians assaulted him, tied him up, and scrawled a heart and the letters ‘LGBT’ in lipstick on his mirror.

The attack feeds into growing tension between the two countries, after the Netherlands launched legal action to free Greenpeace activists detained by Russia in the Arctic on Sep. 22, and after a Russian diplomat was arrested in The Hague last week on suspicion of mistreating his children, BBC reports.

Dutch Foreign Minister Frans Timmermans has since apologized for the arrest, which sparked protests outside the Dutch embassy in Moscow.

Russian media have identified the Dutch diplomat as the embassy’s deputy head Onno Elderenbosch.