An out gay politician has sent a moving message to gay men in Chechnya.
Seb Dance is a Labour MEP representing the London region in the European Parliament.
In the past, he has made headlines for holding up a sign reading ‘he’s lying to you’ while UKIP’s on-and-off leader and MEP Nigel Farage was speaking.
Now Dance, who is an outspoken supporter of human rights, has sent a direct message to gay men in Chechnya, who live under threat of being detained in concentration camps, and Russia.
— Seb Dance MEP (@SebDance) May 17, 2017
‘You are not the problem if you’re LGBTI. You are not the illness,’ he said.
‘It is the people who are doing this to you, they are the problem.
‘And it is this organization, the international community, who will stand to defend you.’
Prior to his direct address, Dance called the ‘examples in denial’ coming from Russian and Chechen authorities ‘appaling’ and said they ‘do no justice to the people who are suffering’.
‘I am a gay man. And I’m able to be here with other gay men, other lesbians, other LGBTI people and do the work that we do because I know I’m not going to be dragged fro my seat by the authorities,’ Dance said.
‘I know I’m not going to be beaten up by the canal and left for dead and then that be denied by the police and indeed by my own government.
‘They’re here to protect me.’