Russian LGBT Network’s Statement on the Orlando Tragedy

The Russian LGBT Network is deeply shocked by the events that happened in Orlando on June 12, 2016, by the events that caused death of 49 people and serious injuries of more than 50 people.

The Russian LGBT Network express the deepest condolences to all friends and relatives of victims and survivors, and to all the population of the United States of America. We grieve together with you.

What happened in Orlando is a tragedy not just for one country, but for all LGBT-community, for all humanity. It is the evidence of the fact that homophobia and hatred always lead to violence. It is the reminder that there is no countries, where people do not die because of homophobia, biphobia and transphobia.

In Russia, where homophobia and hatred is the base of state policies, violence flourish. From the day of the tragedy, people in different cities bring flowers and candles to the American Embassy and Consulates, but they are not free even to express their grief. On June 13, in Moscow two people were detained for the attempt to place the poster “Love wins” next to the building of the American Embassy. The next day the police demanded LGBT activists from Moscow to remove rainbow ribbons from the flowers they brought to the Embassy. The UN Security Council proposed to consider the massacre as an act of terror, but Russia turned down the initial version of the Resolution.

We, LGBT activists and members of LGBT community in Russia, know well how deeply hate crimes hurt. We have this experience and we feel your pain and grieve with you. 

This tragedy in Orlando is the result of hatred and crime against humanity. Not everyone who perished that day belonged to LGBTIQ community, but they all died because of hatred towards LGBTIQ. And we will continue to fight for the world without hatred.