On April 3, 2018 (11 am), a press conference devoted to the persecution of LGBT people in Chechnya will take place at the press center of news agency Rosbalt (Moscow, Skaterny pereulok 4/2, building 1). A year passed since the moment when the world learned about the unprecedented kidnappings, tortures and murders of LGBT people in Chechnya, but the Russian authorities still do not do anything to stop persecutions or punish perpetrators.
At the press conference, the materials of the official investigation, and the results of the independent journalist investigation will be presented. In addition, the Russian LGBT Network will present recent data on the support provided to the victims and the details of evacuation of more than 100 people suffered within the state-sponsored campaign against homosexuals in Chechnya.
On April 19, 2017, the Investigative Committee of Russia initiated the pretrial investigation of the signs of the offence in the acts of the police officers and the holders of public offices in Chechnya under the articles 105 and 286 of the Criminal Code. “Murder of two or more persons committed by a group of persons by previous consent committed by reason of hatred or enmity with respect to some social group” and “Commission by an official of actions which transcend the limits of his powers (with the use of violence or with the threat of its use) and which involve a substantial violation of the rights and lawful interests of individuals.
On September 21, 2017, the Federal Investigative Committee initiated another one pretrial investigation upon application filed by Maxim Lapunov. Maxim Lapunov became the victim of the campaign against homosexuals in Chechnya, and dared to share his experience publicly and to ask for the protection of Russian law enforcement agencies.
Both pretrial investigations are still in process. The Investigative Committee did not initiate criminal proceedings despite the fact that journalists and human rights defenders proved the death of at least four victims, and their names were passed on to the investigative bodies.
Speakers at the press conference:
- Igor Kochetkov, Russian LGBT Network;
- Elena Milashina, Novaya Gazeta;
- Petr Zaikin, lawyer.
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The official language of the press conference is Russian. The translated version will be available on April 4.