YFJ: Urgent motion on the arbitrary detention of gay and bisexual people in Chechnya
According to the Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta, over 100 gay and bisexual men have been detained, tortured and asked to reveal the names of other gay men. While there are reports of some men being returned to their families, they are placed in grave danger of violence from their own family members and others. This information has been corroborated by Human Rights Watch.(1) The European Youth Forum is deeply concerned and vehemently condemns the arbitrary detention and torture of men perceived to be gay in the Republic of Chechnya of the Russian Federation. The situation constitutes a gross violation of human rights and must urgently be addressed.
Over a million citizens from across the world as well as Russian activists and United Nations human rights experts have joined the global outcry for an end to the detentions.
The Youth Forum is further concerned about the effects on young people, who already face significant barriers to accessing their rights and becoming independent, autonomous individuals.
The European Youth Forum is firmly committed to human rights, equality and non-discrimination. While it is encouraging that young Russians are more accepting of homosexuality than older generations,(2) human rights are universal and inalienable, and must never be subject to public opinion.
The European Youth Forum calls on the Russian government and on Chechen authorities to ensure there is an effective investigation that can lead to accountability for any human rights violations including remedy for victims and to bring an immediate end to any human rights abuses of gay and bisexual people in Chechnya.
The European Youth Forum also calls on governments and international organisations to support local organisations working to rescue or evacuate individuals who may be at risk(3).
2 According to a 2013 study conducted by Pew Research: http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2013/08/05/russias-anti-gay-laws-in-line-with-publics-views-on-homosexuality/