A woman who was tortured in Chechnya filed a complaint to the Investigative Committee

On January 20, 22 years old woman applied to the Investigative Committee and asked to initiate criminal proceedings against her parents, a person who tried to “expel evil spirits” and the personnel of the Boyev’s Clinic for Conterminal Psychiatric Conditions in Grozny. In her complaint, Aminat Lorsanova states that in 2018 she was twice unlawfully placed in a psychiatric establishment and were tortured and beaten there.

She specifies that in August 2018 she spent 25 days at the Clinic for Conterminal Psychiatric Conditions. She also spent 4 month at the Republican Psycho-Neurological Dispensary. During that period, her father’s acquaintance several times beat her with a stick while reading Koran. According to this person, he tried to “expel gins”.

“He was beating me with a stick in the solar plexus, pressing this area and below with his fingers, he put down my skirt to the hips and was pressing there as well. I was screaming out of pain, and his was yelling prays. My mother and father observed the process but did not do anything even though I asked for help and asked them to stop that”. Aminat Lorsanova  

Aminat Lorsanova also told that in the end of 2018 her father at least six times made her injections against her will. “He put handcuffs and tied my legs with adhesive tape, my mouth was also taped. He told me that he was going to treat me as an animal, as a sheep. After the injection of aminazin I was supposed to sleep that way. He even didn’t unleash my legs and hands”.

In April 2019, Aminat Lorsanova left Chechnya. The Russian LGBT Network helped her to escape from the country. Coordinator of the Emergency Support program points out it was the support to Lorsanova that caused the attack on the apartment of the Network’s volunteer on May 17, 219. That time unknown people broke into the apartment and aggressively interrogated the volunteer.  They looked for Lorsanova and coordinator of the Emergency Support program.

Veronika Lapina from the Russian LGBT Network highlights that such practices of exorcism are widespread not only in Chechnya, but also in the Chechen families outside the republic. “More than 30 young LBK+ women the Network worked with experienced this often sexualized form of inhuman treatment because of their sexual orientation”.

Coordinator of the Monitoring and International Advocacy Program Natalia Poplevskaya confirms that the so-called “conversion therapy” remains one of the most difficult issues in Russia despite the fact that homosexuality was depathologized more than 30 years ago. “Because of the misconceptions related to sexual orientation and gender identity, LGBT+ people in Russia face harassment, rapes and violence from people, who tries “to fix” their sexual orientation or gender identity”. 

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