A protest against Chechnya’s anti-gay purge is taking place in London

A protest against Chechnya’s abuses of the LGBTQ community is taking place in London.

Coinciding with Holocaust Memorial Day on Sunday 27 January, hundreds of LGBTQ people and their allies are expected to protest outside the Russian Embassy to raise awareness of the situation in Chechnya.

Earlier this month, it was reported that Chechnya had launched another crackdown on LGBTQ people in the region, with activists claiming that two people have been killed and a further 40 have been detained because of their sexual orientation.

The protest has four demands: For Theresa May to publicly condemn Chechnya’s atrocities; for governments to shelter refugees from Chechnya; for a United Nations investigation on Russia; and for Russian authorities to bring those responsible to justice.

To mark 80 years since the start of World War II, the protest will also remember the thousands of LGBTQ individuals who were murdered during the Nazi Holocaust, and the millions who have been murdered or abused across the world since.

Michael Salter-Church MBE, Co-Chair of Pride in London, said: “50 years on from brave activists taking a stand at Stonewall, the appalling events in Chechnya highlight with vivid brutality that the fight isn’t over.

“Whilst the UK is focused on Brexit we mustn’t forget those who need our support. We must take a stand for our community in countries where they can’t as it could – and does – cost them their lives.

“The British Government must raise this at the highest level with Russia and call for both an end to this persecution and the prosecution of the perpetrators. Let us also show the world our support of human rights by raising this at the UN.

“We urge members of the LGBT+ community in London to join protests and give money to activists in Chechnya, Russia and other countries where people face death and imprisonment for being who they are.”

The QUEER POWER protest against Chechnyan murders takes place 1-2pm on Sunday 27 January at the Russian Consulate (London, W2 4LW). If you want to help but can’t make the protest, you can donate at allout.org

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