Target: Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov
Goal: Stop the murder and incarceration of LGBT+ individuals.
Human rights campaigners have claimed that Chechen authorities have rounded up 100 gay men and imprisoned them in camps where they allegedly face regular beatings, torture, and degrading treatment. At least three murders are already believed to have taken place in what many argue are the first concentration camps since the Nazis. It’s vital that this violent oppression is stopped before any more innocents are imprisoned or killed.
Chechnya, a semi-autonomous Russian republic, is often referred to as Europe’s last dictatorship and has a long history of oppressing minority groups. The current allegations are only the most recent but include accusations of guards torturing men by electrocuting their hands and forcing them to sit on bottles, as well as the suggestion that men have been beaten to death. International rights groups have mobilized in response to the issue and are offering support and even evacuation for members of the LGBT+ community. Chechen officials, however, have denied the allegations, apparently claiming that homosexuals do not even exist in Chechnya and, if they did, would already have been ‘sent to where they could never return’ by their own families.
For many in the international community, such claims are not only an ineffective and unbelievable denial but actually function as hate speech in their own right, intended to actively encourage Chechen citizens towards homophobic violence and murder. In this respect, they further highlight the power and danger of the Chechen government’s alleged activities and the urgent need for international condemnation. Join us in signing this petition and demanding an end to the incarceration and murder of Chechnya’s LGBT+ community.
Dear Ramzan Kadyrov,
I am writing to you regarding recent allegations that Chechen authorities have been rounding up gay men and imprisoning them in prison camps. Reports suggest that these men have been exposed to violence, torture, and degrading treatment by guards. Many in the international community have condemned this brutal behavior and described these prisons as the first concentration camps since the Nazis.
I am aware that your officials have denied all allegations by claiming that homosexuals do not exist in Chechnya and, if they did, would be ‘sent away’ by their own families. However, I find this argument unconvincing, illogical, and, in itself, extremely homophobic. Accordingly, I, like so many throughout the international community, call on you to release anyone imprisoned in the camps and to cease the incarceration and murder of members of the LGBT+ community.
[Your Name Here].
Photo credit: Benson Kua