British LGBT campaigner Peter Tatchell has been detained by Russian police in Moscow ahead of the opening ceremony of the World Cup.
Mr Tatchell was detained for what Russian police described as an illegal protest.
He had attempted to hold a solitary demonstration near the Red Square to draw attention to human rights abuses against gay men in Chechnya.
A Reuters reporter saw a Russian policeman inform Mr Tatchell that it was illegal to hold such protests during the tournament.
The policeman told Mr Tatchell that he had to stop or he would be detained.
After what was described as a “long conversation”, Tatchell was led away to a waiting police car.
Last year, the Novaya Gazeta newspaper reported that more than 100 gay men had been locked up and tortured in the Russian republic.
At the time, Sky News interviewed a man who told us how he was forced to flee Chechnya after police turned up at his home looking for him.
Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov denies claims that gay men are killed in his country, claiming that no gay men even exist there.