Superstar Cher has turned down an offer to perform at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, citing the country's anti-gay legislation for her decision.
The "Believe" hitmaker was asked by a friend to become an ambassador for the sporting event and open the show, but the gay icon immediately declined. She tells Canada's Maclean's magazine, "I want to know why all of this gay hate just exploded over there. He [her friend] said the Russian people don't feel the way the government does."
In June, Russian lawmakers banned the "propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations," sparking international backlash and protests from human rights campaigners. Many politicians, athletes and celebrities have spoken out against the law, including Lady Gaga, Madonna and actor Wentworth Miller, who recently "came out" as gay.
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