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LGBTI women reportedly sexually assaulted in Chechnya’s anti-gay purge

LGBTI women reportedly sexually assaulted in Chechnya’s anti-gay purge

Protest of Chechnya outside the Russian Embassy in London

New reports out of Chechnya allege LGBTI women are being sexually assaulted in the Republic’s current anti-gay purge.

According to Q News, activists involved in protecting LGBTI people have said that women being rounded up are suffering sexual violence at the hands of Chechen authorities.

Igor Kochetkov, the programme director of the Russian LGBT Network, revealed survivors of the purge said they were subjected to ‘increasingly cruel and violent’ torture.

The Network expanded, saying that authorities raped some women with ‘electric shock sticks’.

‘They did not feed us. Sometimes they gave us some water, dirty water that was left after mopping. They gave us clean water only for prayer,’ one survivor said.

Chechen authorities are denying this new slew of accusations.

Chechen Minister of National Policy Dzhambulat Umaro, while speaking to the Daily Beast, called the allegations ‘fantasy’ and ‘nonsense’.

‘Considering the fact that [gay people] have sick imaginations to start from, I am not surprised that they can write nonsense like that,’ he said.

What’s happening now

These reported actions are the latest wave of anti-gay activity in Chechnya. Activists first warned of what is allegedly happening in the Republic a couple weeks into 2019.

Recent reports confirmed that around 40 people have been detained on suspicions of being gay and two men died due to ‘extreme torture’.

A website in Russia, of which Chechnya is a federal state of, was recently reactivated and calls for ‘gay hunters’.

This violent crackdown of the LGBTI community first began gaining attention in March 2017. It is unknown precisely how many people have been detained, although some reports put the number in the hundreds.

Numerous organizations and officials have called for action against Chechen authorities.

See also:

LGBTI people face torture and death in Chechnya – here’s how you can help them

Is Chechnya’s torture and killing of LGBTI people a new Holocaust?

Jeremy Hunt joins calls to end ‘disturbing’ LGBTI violence in Chechnya