Stories of the horror in Chechnya are emerging after it was reported men are being targeted for being gay.
Human rights groups have revealed how more than 100 gay men have been detained in the autonomous Russian region.
Several people have been reportedly killed following raids.
In a response, a Chechan government spokesperson denied there were any gay people in the region to detain. They insisted ‘you can’t detain and harass someone who doesn’t exist in the republic.’. The Kremlin also denied knowledge of a ‘purge’.
But one personal story of torture has come to light.
One gay man had been detained by security officials on suspicion of homosexuality for a week.
Strapped to a ‘homemade electric chair’, he was beaten with a hose to force him to ‘confess’ to names of other gay men.
He was forced to sleep in a room with 30 other people and were barely fed.
A Russian LGBT Network spokesperson said: ‘According to him, the security officials themselves stated the order came from the leaders of the Republic….
‘The more the person informed, the longer he was detained.’
Foreign ministers urge Russia to intervene
Foreign ministers from the US, UK and European Union have all urged Russia to urgently intervene.
‘We condemn violence against any individuals based on their sexual orientation or any other basis,’ a US State Department spokesperson 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.
‘We were likewise deeply disturbed by local authorities statements that apparently condone and even incite violence against LGBTI persons.’