U2 Songs of Innocence album cover under fire in Russia for promoting homosexuality
U2's Songs of Innocence album cover, which depicts Larry Mullen embracing his son, has come under fire in Russia for promoting homosexuality.
Russian politician Alexander Starovoitov has requested an investigation into Apple and U2's free upload of Songs of Innocence to more than 500 million iTunes customers last year.
Starovoitov, a member of the rightwing LDPR party, has accused both Apple and U2 of spamming youth with illegal content and 'gay propaganda', claiming the image of Mullen embracing his son Elvis (18) promotes homosexuality.
He claims that the download was in breach of controversial legislation introduced two years ago which aims to crack down on the gay community in Russia.
He said the image features "what I believe to be two men engaged in a manifestation of non-traditional sexual relations".
Both Mullen and Elvis are shirtless in the image which graces the album's cover.
According to a statement on U2.com at the time of release, the artwork was by British fashion photographer and film director Glen Luchford, and it "resonates with the band's iconic 1980 debut album Boy - and the album War, three years later."
Of the artwork, Bono says, "The idea of the unique relationship between a parent and child, the image of a father and son, came from the band. The shoot with Larry and his son was initially an experiment but everyone loved it as a visual metaphor for the record.
"If you know the album, you'll see the themes in the visual language, how 'holding on to your own innocence is a lot harder than holding on to someone else's."