Greece hands over the Olympic flame to Russia, which will host the Winter Games -- a global event aimed at promoting unity.

But some feel that Vladimir Putin's Russia is afar from a welcoming place, even for some of its own citizens.

His anti-gay propaganda law is believed by critics to be repressive.

A group of five from the gay rights organization "Color Youth" stands defiantly outside the marble stadium that hosted the first modern Games in 1896.

Gay rights activist George Charonis holds a sign that reads "Homophobia is not in the spirit of the Olympics."

(SOUNDBITE) (English) GAY RIGHTS ACTIVIST, GEORGE CHARONIS, FROM THE GAY RIGHTS ORGANIZATION "COLOR YOUTH", SAYING:

"The current laws that are banning gay propaganda in Russia are having a very direct correlation with the increase in homophobic attacks and violence against LGBTQ people in Russia,"

The International Olympic Committee has come under fire by some humans rights groups that accuse the Committee of not doing more to press Russia over the new law.