Search form

Scroll To Top
News & Opinion

Chechen Politician Reportedly Present at Torture of Gay Men

Magomed Daudov, Chechnya
Associated Press

The entire assault on the gay community in Chechnya began with a single man. 

A new report from Human Rights Watch details and chronicles the anti-gay purge in Chechnya from its starting point at the end of February up to now. While most of the information is a rehashing of headlines seen in the past few weeks regarding the abduction, detainment, torture, and disappearance of gay men in the Russian region, some lesser known things are given light.

Related | 40 Gay Men Have Been Rescued From Chechnya's Concentration Camps

According to HRW, the purge began during the last week of February when a young man was detained for being under the influence of drugs. After police searched his phone, they found messages and photos indicating he was gay. They tortured and interrogated the man for information regarding people he'd been in contact with on social media and messaging apps, starting a chain reaction with individuals being tortured to reveal more names.

Related | Paul Tuller's LGBTQ Chechnya T-Shirt

Officials reported to superior officers, who took the information to Magomed Daudov, the speaker of the Chechen parliament and friend of Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov. HRW reports that Daudov played a key role in giving approval to set the purge in motion, and detainees interviewed by HRW heard him referred to frequently, and some even reported seeing him at detention sites.

"They get one person, go through his phone, torture him, make him name some others, get those others, and so it goes," a former captive told HRW. "In the place where I was held, we were four [gay men] at first, but several days later we were already 20. At night, when we were left alone, I tried to convince the new arrivals to buck up, deny everything, not name anyone. I kep telling them that the more people we name, the more information we give, the loner we'll spend in this hell hole, the longer we'll be tortured."

Advocate Channel - The Pride StoreOut / Advocate Magazine - Fellow Travelers & Jamie Lee Curtis

From our Sponsors

Most Popular

Latest Stories

Dennis Hinzmann