U.S. Permanent Representative to U.N. demands that investigation be opened into detention of homosexuals in Chechnya

The U.S. Ambassador to the U.N., Nikki Haley, stated that is was an "impossibility to ignore" the reports about the abductions, torture, and killings of people in Chechnya on the basis of their sexual orientation. Her statement was published on the website of the U.S. Mission to the United Nations.

The diplomat also noted that the U.S. "is still concerned" about this information. "Chechen authorities must immediately investigate these allegations and hold everyone involved accountable," Haley added, noting that, in her opinion, it is necessary to "take steps to prevent future abuses."

"We are against all forms of discrimination, including on the basis of sexual orientation," the Permanent Representative said. Discrimination and human rights violations, according to Haley, "can lead to destabilization and conflict" if such actions are not stopped in time.

Earlier, on April 8th, a special statement on the persecution of men of unconventional sexual orientation in Chechnya was issued by the U.S. Department of State. In it, the Department urged Russian authorities to investigate these cases, "to oppose such practices," and "to take measures to ensure the release of those who have been unlawfully detained."

In early April, Novaya Gazeta reported on a "coordinated campaign," during which hundreds of men who were considered homosexuals were abducted. According to the newspaper, the men were subjected to torture and other ill-treatment, used to make them disclose information about other homosexuals that they knew. Later, members of the Russian LGBT network confirmed this information, citing their sources.

After this publication, an emergency meeting of Islamic theologians and leaders of public opinion was held in Chechnya, in a mosque in Grozny. According to Novaya, at this meeting the adviser to the head of Chechnya, Adam Shakhidov, accused the employees of Novaya Gazeta of slander and called them "enemies of our faith and our homeland." There was also a resolution adopted which "openly calls for violence."

  USA, Russia, Chechya, LGBT