Russia: President Vetoes Compulsory HIV Testing Legislation

In December 1994 the President of the Russian Federation, Boris Yeltsin, vetoed legislation which would have required all foreigners living in Russia or seeking to enter the country for any reason to be tested for HIV. Both houses of the Russian parliament had previously passed the bill precipitating a strong international campaign calling on Yeltsin to veto.

If the bill had become law, foreigners who had refused to take the HIV antibody test or who had tested positive would not have been allowed entry into Russia or would have been deported. The legislation would also have required that Russian citizens who work in "certain" professions or receive certain forms of medical care be tested. The word "certain" was not defined in the legislation.