On Monday, April 17, the Council of Europe Secretary General, Thorbjorn Jagland, called on Russia to investigate information about" torture and abductions" of homosexuals in Chechnya. "I'm sure your office is well aware of these allegations. Considering the severity of such claims, of course, I am sure you will consider them with due care, "- it said in a letter to the Commissioner for Human Rights in Russia, Tatiana Moskalkova.

The head of Chechnya , Ramzan Kadyrov has called accusations against Chechen security forces - simple slander. Russian President's Press Secretary, Dmitriy Peskov, has confirmed that law enforcement agencies are investigating the possibility of any such claims.


Story picked up by "Toronto Sun"
This original theme of torture and executions of gays in Chechnya was propagated by journalists of "Novaya Gazeta", publishing names of GayRussia.com activists, with assertions that the activists claim not to have made. The NG publication has since been sued by the activists of GayRussia.com, stating - "We [organisation] never gave any information in regard to torture and executions of gays in Chechnya."



The original headline was quickly picked up by English-speaking media. Some of their titles are as follows: "Chechnya opened the first concentration camp for gay men since the days of Hitler» (Daily Mail), "Chechens reveal prison torture and electroshock : They called us animals" (The Guardian) and "Report on torture of gays in Chechnya is not an investigation, but only threats against journalists ( Washington Post).


According to the head of the Center of Social and Political Projects, political consultant Konstantin Listratov, the Kremlin is facing a number of challenges due to the slanderous resonance of these articles. "The Russian authorities risk their reputation, in the form of information attacks from both the Western human rights activists and by Russian liberal politicians and public figures."

External and internal opposition will use any grounds for criticism.

When a topic is promoted as a human rights violation, risks can be minimized through a proper investigation believes Listratov - "Individual utterances are one thing - but publications of major human rights organizations and Western political leaders is another."

Western politicians have indeed expressed their concern. The British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, and the international human rights organization Amnesty International have asked the head of the Investigative Committee, Alexander Bastrykin, of Chechnya to "bring the situation under control."

In the sphere of social networks, a campaign to draw attention to the Chechen "gay torture problem" states - "Colleagues and activists in Russia! How can we best help the situation in Chechnya? We sign petitions, organize events, give money to the Russian LGBT Network for assistance to relocate refugees [to other areas of Russia]"

Follow the money.

The journalists of "Novaya Gazeta" may have become hostages of a scam organized by Russia's "LGBT Network". In their mailbox, ([email protected]), the same victim stories have been found that were published in "Novaya Gazeta". Now, this same organization is raising funds for victims at a special website. Donations are being collected for the emigration of Chechen homosexuals, from US $ 10 to unlimited - you can also arrange monthly transfers.

LGBT activist, Nikolay Alekseev, has called it "the most ambitious financial scam in LGBT history of Russia." Alekseev, in his post on Facebook wrote that it is very easy to collect donations, with the help of the media. But in the end, suggests Alekseev, the funds raised in the defense of Chechen gays "end up in unknown pockets, and the situation with LGBT rights in Russia remains unaddressed."

The Director of Applied Political Studies Institute, Gregory Dobromelov, has stated foreign mass media publications are "predictable", but no real consequences will be caused. "It is clear that the Western media works to discredit the image of Russia, any excuse to carry out such a task will suffice."