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Thank you: GSN smashes target of Chechnya Crisis Appeal to save LGBTI lives

Thank you: GSN smashes target of Chechnya Crisis Appeal to save LGBTI lives

Gay men have been taken away and locked in concentration camps in Chechnya | Photo: Dave Frenkel

The Gay Star News crisis appeal for Chechnya has smashed its target in just one week.

Readers, thank you for sharing and supporting our appeal to help end the ‘gay purge’.

At the time of publishing, we have raised over $4,000 (€3,560). This money will go to a very good cause.

Gay purge in Chechnya

LGBTI people are being rounded up, detained, tortured and executed in Chechnya. The ‘gay purge’ has been happening periodically since the end of 2016.

What we know is that Chechen authorities have targeted human rights defenders, their critics and LGBTI people. Since 2016 hundreds of people have been detained, with many of those executed. The authorities even tortured several LGBTI detainees to death.

Even though when international attention has focused on Chechnya after each ‘gay purge’, the persecution stops for awhile, but it picks up again once that attention wanes.

Why we’re doing this appeal

Gay Star News has partnered with the Russian LGBTI Network to help protect persecuted LGBTI people.

We want to help save their lives by helping to evacuate them from Russia.

Simply getting one person asylum in a new country costs at least $4,555.

This is why we also want to raise as much money as possible.

Tris Reid-Smith, editor-in-chief of GSN, said: ‘We are blown away by the response to the Chechnya appeal in the first week.

‘It shows we can provide hope and save more lives. It shows LGBTI people at their best. When we work together, we beat the torturers and murderers who are killing our brothers and sisters. When we are united, we win and the haters lose.

‘Therefore, we’re increasing our target to $12,000.

‘We hope that we’ll be able to reach this, and maybe even more, in two weeks time – the half way point of our crisis appeal.

‘Thank you to everyone who has donated and shared already.

‘We hope people will continue to be generous.’

It has to stop

Mikhail Tumasov, Chairperson of the Russian LGBT Network, said: ‘I thank the Gay Star News team and all who contributed to LGBTI people in Chechnya.

‘We beat the goal in a week. It shows how human and powerful we are!

‘Stick together and one day we’ll wake up in the world where there is no place for hate, discrimination and violence.’

The Russian LGBTI Network has been the key organization in getting LGBTI Chechens to safety. They have organized new IDs for them, rushed them to safe houses where they provide them with bedding, clothing, food and in some cases, emergency medical care.

From there they are also trying to evacuate them to a new country where they can seek asylum and hopefully lead new lives in safety.

Help us make a difference

As well as using our investigative journalism to keep you informed about what’s happening on-the-ground as it happens; we’re inviting you to make a difference today by donating to the Chechyna Crisis Appeal.

Every dollar, euro and pound you give will help evacuate LGBTI people in the most danger. And to pressure the Chechen authorities to stop this persecution. 

Please also share our appeal with your followers, friends and family; ensuring we raise awareness and apply pressure to permanently end this abuse.

See also

WATCH: Inside the Chechnya concentration camp where gay men say they were tortured

Russia website calls for ‘gay hunters’ to attack LGBTIs across the country

Survivor of Chechnya’s ‘gay purge’ reveals truth of horrifying torture