Authorities in Tajikistan have drawn up a list of 367 allegedly gay citizens, saying they would be required to undergo testing to avoid “the spread of sexually-transmitted diseases”.
A police source told Agence France Press that “strict medical records” were needed for members of the gay community because “such people have a high risk of contracting sexually-transmitted infections through infectious diseases.”
Homosexuality is not banned in Tajikistan but is frowned upon.
The crackdown on gay people in Egypt has intensified in recent days, according to the Washington Post.
Security forces raided cafes in downtown Cairo and courts delivered harsh prison sentences, further driving the nation’s LGBT community underground.
More than 60 people have been arrested since a concert last month by a rock group where some members of the audience waved a rainbow flag.
Security forces have also detained people at their homes in the middle of the night and used apps and online chat rooms to entrap those perceived to be gay.
Some cafes frequented by the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community have been shut down.
Indonesian police detained 58 men including several foreigners in a raid on a gay sauna, the latest sign of a backlash against homosexuals in the Muslim-majority country.
They raided a sauna and gym in the capital Jakarta after they received information from the public that it was being used for prostitution.
“We secured 51 and seven employees for allegedly providing pornographic services,” Jakarta Police spokesman Argo Yuwono said in a statement.
Six foreigners were among those detained, including four men from China, one from Thailand and one from Holland.
Yuwono said six of those detained would be charged under Indonesia’s anti-pornography law, and could face up to six years in prison. It is not clear what – if anything – the remaining 52 would be charged with.
Human Rights Watch notes:
Authorities in Azerbaijan are not denying that gay men in Baku have been rounded up in official raids, from mid-September, they are just disputing the reason. Ehsan Zahidov, spokesman for the Ministry of Internal Affairs, said in a September interview with EurasiaNet.org that police were responding to complaints from residents in Baku that gay men were visible on the streets.
Government officials have also justified the Baku raids in the language of public health, claiming that the gay men arrested were tested for sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV and Syphilis. “Those who have diseases are being isolated from society,” Zahidov said. The director of the AIDS Center of Azerbaijan, Natig Zulfugarov, points out that it would be against the law for the police to do so without a court order, which they did not have.
In Azerbaijan, homosexuality was decriminalised in 2000. You’d never know, would you.
More than 40 men were arrested at an HIV awareness event in Lagos, Nigeria over the weekend “for performing homosexual acts”, according to local police.
The arrested people are due to appear in court.
Homosexual acts are punishable by up to 14 years in jail in Nigeria, while gay marriage and displays of same-sex affection are also banned.
Some parts of Nigeria are under Sharia law where gay people face the death penalty.
Nigeria is a Commonwealth country with a population of around 170 million people.
It is hard to verify news coming out of Chechnya, so Gay Activist reports them as allegations, not facts. The situation seems to be deteriorating rapidly, and details take some time to emerge.
A secret mass execution of up to 56 people was carried in the volatile Russian region of Chechnya on 25 January, says the Novaya Gazeta, which published a list of names of 27 people who it alleged were wiped out in the alleged extra-judicial killings which are alleged to have taken place in the capital, Grozny.
None of the alleged executed were given a trial, which is a gross betrayal of their human rights under international law.
The mass arrests and executions were triggered by the alleged killing of a policeman on 16 December 2016.
Dozens of gay people executed in Chechnya ‘without ever going to trial’
Reuters | 17120
Turkish police squashed the LGBT pride march in Istanbul after organisers pressed ahead with the event despite the third ban in as many years by the authorities.
Police with riot shields and helmets sealed off the entrances to Istiklal Street, citing security concerns after threats from an ultra-nationalist group.
Police fired rubber bullets to disperse one group and officers with dogs chased Pridegoers.
It is reported that Russian officials are examining claims that a deadly anti-homosexual purge has been unfolding in Chechnya. Detainees who spoke to the Guardian reported being held in a secret location for days or weeks, beaten and tortured with electric shocks.
After international outcry, Russian President Vladimir Putin has been briefed on the situation by the country’s human rights ombudsman, Tatyana Moskalkova. The Guardian reports there is evidence Russian authorities are investigating the allegations.
Human rights groups have urged Moscow to investigate the reported abuse and alleged deaths of gay men. German Chancellor Angela Merkel confronted Putin about the issue during a recent meeting with him.
Today Human Rights Watch issued details of alleged abuses of gay men at the hands of Chechen authorities. The report says the men who are released face reprisals not only from Chechen security forces, but also from their own families.
Chechnya is an extremely conservative society and homosexuality is considered a “stain” on the family honour.
A spokesperson for Ramzan Kadyrov, Chechnya’s strongman leader, again dismissed reports of the purge by saying that there are no gay people in the quasi-independent state. “You cannot arrest or repress people who just don’t exist in the republic,” he said, according to the New York Times.
Polda Metro | 17094
Indonesian police have arrested dozens of men accused of holding a ‘gay sex party’ at a gym and sauna in Jakarta.
Officers raided a venue called Atlantis in the late hours of Sunday and arrested 141 men including one Briton and one Singaporean.
Police said up to 10 men could be charged under the country’s harsh pornography laws.
Pictures circulating online showed topless men sitting crammed in a room next to gym equipment after the police raid.
Those found guilty of breaking the laws face up to 10 years in jail.
People arrested in earlier raids were forced to have HIV tests.
Stephen Port | 16284
The families of four men murdered by “Grindr killer” Stephen Port, who met his victims on a gay dating app before spiking them with lethal doses of GHB and dumping their bodies close to his east London flat between June 2014 and September 2015, are suing the Metropolitan Police for more than £200,000 over claims that police failed to link the deaths due to homophobia inside the police force.
The men, Anthony Walgate, 23, Gabriel Kovari, 22, Daniel Whitworth, 21, and Jack Taylor, 25, all died of GHB poisoning. Three of them were found in a churchyard next to Mr Port’s home in Barking.
Port left a fake suicide note with Mr Whitworth that read: “Please do not blame the guy I was with last night.” Police initially thought the youngsters had overdosed and dismissed concerns raised by their friends and family members. Officers only realised they had been murdered after a fresh investigation was launched following the death of Mr Taylor, who was Mr Port’s final victim.
Seventeen family members of the victims are suing Scotland Yard in the High Court, claiming that officers discriminated against their relatives because they were gay. They allege there were “breaches of duty and inaction” and accuse the force of breaching the Equality Act 2010, of negligence, and misusing or abusing their power by failing to properly investigate; and are seeking “aggravated and exemplary damages” in excess of £200,000.
Officers admitted they “missed opportunities” after failing to spot similarities between the killings.