State Department disputes HRC claim US refused to sign Chechnya statement

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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The State Department on March 20 disputed the Human Rights Campaign’s claim the U.S. refused to sign a U.N. statement that calls for an investigation into Chechnya’s anti-LGBTI crackdown.

Albania, Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Montenegro, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, the U.K. and Uruguay signed the statement that was presented during a meeting of the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva on March 18.

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Members of Congress urge Pompeo to condemn Chechnya anti-LGBTI crackdown

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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More than 60 members of the U.S. House of Representatives on Jan. 29 urged Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to publicly condemn the anti-LGBTI crackdown in Chechnya.

U.S. Reps. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.), David Cicilline (D-R.I.), Lee Zeldin (R-N.Y.) and the other lawmakers in their letter also urged Pompeo to pressure the Russian government to end the crackdown.

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State Department ‘deeply disturbed’ by latest Chechnya anti-LGBTI crackdown

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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The State Department on Jan. 17 said it is “deeply disturbed” by reports that indicate at least two people have been killed and upwards of 40 others have been detained in the latest anti-LGBTI crackdown in Chechnya.

“We are deeply disturbed by credible reports out of Chechnya about renewed attacks against individuals perceived to be members of the LGBTI community,” said Deputy Spokesperson Robert Palladino in a statement.

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Anti-LGBTI crackdown in Chechnya continues

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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The Washington Blade has confirmed a report that indicates several men and women were recently detained in Chechnya because of their sexual orientation.

Igor Kochetkov, a prominent Russian LGBTI rights activist, on Jan. 11 told the Associated Press the detentions began late last month.

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European court: Russia’s ban on LGBT rallies violates rights

By : wire report
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PARIS (AP) | The European Court of Human Rights issued a fresh rebuke to the Kremlin on Nov. 27, ruling that Russia’s continued ban on LGBT rallies is discriminatory and represents a violation of human rights.

Judges at the court based in the eastern French city of Strasbourg called on Moscow to introduce “systemic measures” to remedy the breaches to the European Convention of Human Rights that the Russian Federation became a signatory to in 1996.

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New York Times’ Trump-Putin cartoon criticized as ‘homophobic’

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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The New York Times has come under fire for its cartoon depicting Donald Trump fantasizing about having a love affair with Vladimir Putin which some felt was a homophobic dig.

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HRC joins protest against Trump, Putin before Finland summit

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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The Human Rights Campaign on Sunday urged President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin to publicly condemn the ongoing anti-gay crackdown in Chechnya during their summit in Finland.

The organization specifically projected onto the side of the Presidential Palace in the Finnish capital of Helsinki where the meeting took place on Monday slogans that read, among other things, “Trump and Putin: Stop the crimes against humanity in Chechnya” and “The whole world is watching.” The projections also urged Putin to “investigate LGBTQ persecution” in Chechnya and to “bring the perpetrators to justice.”

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Finnish court acquits duo’s gay bar stunt on Russian plot

By : wire report
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COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — A Swedish comedy and rap duo has been acquitted of building a makeshift gay bar in 2015 on a plot of land in Finland owned by Russian president Vladimir Putin to protest against Russia’s anti-gay laws.

The court on Aland islands off the southwestern Finnish coast rejected Thursday a Russian charge against Frej Larsson and Simon Gardenfors, the local Nya Aaland daily said. The Russian charge said the two unlawfully constructed on the grounds of Putin’s summer residence and demanded a fine.

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Trump meets with Putin at G20 summit

By : MICHAEL K. LAVERS of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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It remains unclear whether President Trump on Friday raised the ongoing crackdown against gay men in Chechnya with Russian President Vladimir Putin during their meeting at the G20 Summit.

The Associated Press reported Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who attended the meeting in the German city of Hamburg that lasted more than two hours, told reporters Trump raised the Kremlin’s efforts to interfere with the 2016 presidential election.

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HRC to Trump: Ask Putin about Chechnya anti-gay abuses

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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Ahead of a scheduled bilateral meeting between President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin, the largest LGBT group in the United States is calling on Trump to “forcefully raise” reports of anti-gay human rights abuses in Chechnya.

In a letter dated July 5, Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin said bringing up the issue of anti-gay violence in Chechnya with Putin is “imperative” in the aftermath of reports that more than 100 men perceived as gay or bisexual have been detained and tortured.

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Germany starts granting humanitarian visas to Chechen gays

By : Wire Report
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BERLIN (AP) – Germany has begun granting gays from Chechnya special visas on humanitarian grounds following reports that gay people are being tortured and killed in the Russian republic.

The Foreign Ministry told The Associated Press June 8 that the first man arrived in Germany on June 6 and four other applications for humanitarian visas are being reviewed.

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Chechnya’s leader invites Macron, Merkel to visit his region

By : Wire Report
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MOSCOW (AP) – The leader of Russia’s Chechnya has invited the French president and the German chancellor to visit his region and check for themselves the reports about gay people being killed and tortured there.

The Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta reported in April that gay men in Chechnya had been tortured and killed by police. The Associated Press last month spoke to two victims of the crackdown who backed the reports.

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