A Russian rights group said Chechnya has renewed its crackdown on gay people. So far, officials have killed two and detained 40, according to a report from Russian LGBT Network.
Back in 2017, the region’s leader Ramzan Kadyrov was under fire for a similar crackdown, and has denied accusations that it happened, saying there are no gay people in Chechnya, according to the New York Times. Now, the rights group has received numerous calls from Russian families asking for help. Amnesty International has backed up their report.
“News that the authorities have resumed the crackdown is absolutely spine-chilling,” Marie Struthers, a regional director at Amnesty, said in the statement, according to the New York Times. “With lives in jeopardy, there is an urgent need for an international response.”
The director of Russian LGBT Network also said the detainees have been tortured and sexually assaulted.