The Federal Government Coordinator for Intersocietal Cooperation with Russia, Central Asia and the Eastern Partnership Countries, Gernot Erler, issued the following statement today (7 April) on reports from Russia claiming that homosexuals have been singled out for persecution and some even killed on account of their sexual orientation in the constituent republic of Chechnya.
I am extremely concerned by the news from Russia about the persecution of homosexuals in Chechnya. I call on the Russian Government to investigate these terrible reports and, should they turn out to be true, to offer those affected the assistance they require with immediate effect and bring the perpetrators to justice.
We expect the Russian Government to adopt a zero-tolerance approach to the statements made by local authorities in Chechnya. I also wish to call to mind in this regard Russia’s international obligations, particularly the right to life, the prohibition of torture and the right to freedom and security.