A group of LGBTQ+ climbers have conquered Vladimir Putin Peak while planting both a rainbow flag and a Ukraine flag to protest against Putin’s anti-LGBTQ+ and pro-war regime.

The recent protest by the group known as ‘Gay Climbers’ follows two other Russian climbers’ protest in response to the outbreak of war in Ukraine, where the pair also hoisted a Ukrainian flag at the peak as a sign of support for the Ukrainian people. However, in less than a few days, the flag of Ukraine was put down by climbers from Kyrgyzstan.

This time, however, with the aim of making it difficult to remove the symbols of LGBTQ+ rights and Ukraine, the Gay Climbers placed rainbow and Ukrainian flags on a hard-to-reach rock near the summit so that they would still be visible to everyone, yet challenging to remove.


Gay Climbers

In addition, Gay Climbers, together with the local LGBTQ+ organisation Kyrgyz Indigo (, put together ‘Pride on the rocks’ in Chunkurchak, inviting the local LGBTQ+ community up and teaching them the basics of rock climbing.

Gay climbers hoisted flags on a rock near Putin Peak as part of the Pink Summits campaign (, a campaign that tackles prejudice and hatred against LGBTQ+ people.

As part of the campaign, a queer team of mountaineers ascends the highest peaks of all continents, the so-called Seven Summits and organises diverse events for LGBTQ+ rock-climbing and mountaineering communities. 

The Pink Summits team has already been on the highest peak in Europe and Russia, Elbrus, with a rainbow flag. This incident resulted in the group being stopped and interrogated by the FSB, the secret services of Russia.