Joe Biden Calls on Trump Admin to Condemn LGBTQ Crisis in Chechnya
Apr 15, 2017, 05:38
"Over a hundred men suspected of being gay are being abducted, tortured and even killed in the southern Russian republic of Chechnya according to credible sources inside the country", Amnesty's petition reads.
Several global organizations including United Nations and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) have called for a thorough Russian investigation into the claims.
"Of course, we are categorically opposed to any other methods of exercising influence, especially if such could pose a threat to the safety and life of journalists", the press secretary of the Russian president, Dmitry Peskov said.
Novaya Gazeta said in a statement on Friday that it fears for the safety of its journalists after exposing the persecution of gay men in Chechnya, a Muslim-majority republic of Russian Federation.
Novaya Gazeta spoke with Chechen men who reported being arrested and subsequently tortured with beatings and electric shocks, as well as being forced to supply authorities with the names and phone numbers of other LGBTQ people. It reportedly took place several days after the newspaper article and threatened retaliation against those who "insulted the centuries-old foundations of Chechen society and the dignity of Chechen men".
The resolution also called Novaya Gazeta " s report "lie and slander" and called Russian media to "use reliable sources and opinions of competent specialists'.
People protest outside the Russian Embassy in London, following reports of the torture and murder of gay men in Chechnya, Wednesday April 12, 2017.
"We urge the authorities to put an end to the persecution of people perceived to be gay or bisexual in the Chechen Republic who are living in a climate of fear fuelled by homophobic speeches by local authorities", the experts stated.
Novaya Gazeta described how at least 100 men have been detained in the World War Two-era camp, leaving at least three people dead.
Chechnya's Interior Ministry dismissed initial reports of the treatment of gay men as an "April fools' joke".
The Russian authorities condemned threats against journalists and said that the Kremlin was monitoring the situation. While Russia did decriminalize homosexual relationships in 1993 and Russians have been allowed to change their official gender on state records since 1997 Putin is not particularly pro-LGBT.
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