While the circus show at the White House steps up its targeting of the LGBTQ community through military bans and workplace discrimination laws, it’s important to remember the humanitarian crisis that’s happening to our community across the ocean in Chechnya.
Over the past year, the country has made international headlines for the barbaric treatment of the gay population there by Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov. He’s denied any kind of gay population, stating “We don’t have those kinds of people here,” while simultaneously kidnapping gay men there, imprisoning them, and establishing gay concentration camps to torture them in a gay “purge.” Horror stories of what has happened in Chechnya have come out and public outcry has made the situation a top priority for the international LGBTQ community.
Now, more information has emerged about how the government is trapping the gay population there. According to Crime Russia, the Chechen government has allegedly begun labeling gay men as terrorists to prevent them from fleeing the country and forcing families of gay and bisexual men to write statements that the men have fled to Russia to join terrorist groups.
As of yet, international pressure has done nothing to quell the terror and torture in the region and, while Russia was forced to investigate Chechnya’s alleged abuse, there have been consequences or relief for the LGBTQ community there.