Gay Men Are Reportedly Being Rounded Up and Killed in Chechnya

Gay Men Are Reportedly Being Rounded Up and Killed in Chechnya

Following reports from a Russian newspaper, the U.S. State Department is calling on Russia to look into the developing humanitarian crisis.

Following reports from a Russian newspaper, the U.S. State Department is calling on Russia to look into the developing humanitarian crisis.

Text: Ian David Monroe

Authorities in Chechnya, a federal subject of Russia in the North Caucasus, have been rounding up, detaining, and torturing gay men in what is being called a "prophylactic sweep," according to The Independent (via Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta). The horrific image gets bleaker with the DailyMail reporting that "Chechnya opens world's first concentration camp for homosexuals since Hitler's in the 1930s." That such barbarity can still exist today, even 100 years later, is appalling.

Multiple outlets, citing Novaya Gazeta, have reported that at least 100 suspected homosexuals have been taken into custody as part of the anti-gay campaign. That same report says that authorities have taken to online dating sites to out closeted gay men. Once in custody, they are subjected to being "beaten with hoses, tortured by electric shock, and beaten to death," according to Buzzfeed News.

A spokesperson for Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov claims the report is false, adding, offensively, that "You cannot detain and persecute people who simply do not exist in the republic.”

The U.S. State Department has called on Russia to look into the reports. In a statement to Buzzfeed News, the State Department said, "We urge the Russian government to conduct an independent and credible investigation into the alleged killings and mass arrests, and hold the perpetrators responsible," adding, "We were likewise deeply disturbed by local authorities statements that apparently condone and even incite violence against LGBTI persons. We are very concerned by the widespread discrimination and violence against LGBTI persons in Russia or any society. We call on the Russian government to protect all people from discrimination and violence, and allow the free exercise of the freedoms of expression, association, peaceful assembly, and religion or belief.”

Read more about the crisis here:

The Independent

Washington Post

The Guardian

Buzzfeed News

The New York Times

The Daily Mail

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