The British government says it is increasing its funding and support for gay rights campaigners in Russia.
The decision comes amid growing concerns about Moscow's introduction of legislation outlawing the promotion of homosexuality.
The build-up to the Winter Olympics in Sochi in February has been dominated by talk of Russia's attitude to gay rights.
Now, in a move which could be seen as provocative by Moscow, Britain is to step up funding and support for activists in Russia calling for greater equality.
Culture Secretary Maria Miller told the BBC it was the right thing to do to protect freedom of speech and universal rights.
Campaigners in Russia welcome the support, but remain concerned that the new law, designed to ban the promotion of homosexuality to children, will still be used as a tool to oppress gay people.
In London, dancers performed at a protest near the Russian embassy on Wednesday organised by Amnesty International.