“They started beating me with their fists and feet. They wanted to get names of my gay friends from me. Then, they tied wires to my hands and put metal clippers in my ears to electrocute me. They’ve got special equipment which is very powerful. When they shock you, you jump high above the ground.” – Testimony of a victim of Chechnya’s anti-gay purge
100 days ago, on April 1, news of Chechnya’s anti-gay purge broke in an article published by the independent Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta. Over 100 men were hunted down, arrested, imprisoned, and tortured because they were believed to be gay. At least 6 men were murdered. Others were returned to their families barely alive, with their captors encouraging relatives to carry out honor killings.
Chechen authorities denied all allegations and consider the suggestion that gay men exist in Chechnya a “filthy provocation.” Ayub Kataev, head of the Argun police, said: “My officers would not even want to touch such people, if they exist, let alone beating or torturing them.” Russian federal authorities claim the allegations were “a provocation, a false report” and have refused to take any action.
100 days after the news has broke, we want to let Russian authorities know that we’re still watching and we demand justice for the #Chechen100. Lend your Facebook and Twitter feeds to our shared cause: don’t let Ramzan Kadyrov, the Head of the Chechen Republic, get away with the anti-gay crackdown. Help keep the pressure up to bring all those responsible for the violence to justice.
It’s been #100DaysofInjustice for the #Chechen100. To #Putin: We’re watching you. Stop the arrests! Justice now! Click here to take action.