Friday, April 14, 2017

Elton Speaks Out Against Gay Concentration Camps in Chechnya

Elton John is using his voice for more than just singing.


The Grammy winner spoke out against the reported abduction and killing of gay men in Chechnya on Wednesday by broadcasting his support of a petition aiming to end the horrific acts.

"Elton supports the petition by (Amnesty International) to put a stop to the abduction and killing of gay men in #Chechnya," he wrote on Twitter, along with a link to the petition and a photo of a statement.

"The freedom to love who you choose is a fundamental human right," the statement read. "It must be protected. If you agree, sign the Amnesty International petition and help fight the reported abduction and killing of gay men in Chechnya."

Amnesty International is a UK-based NGO that focuses on human rights. Their petition against Chechnya currently has nearly 70,000 signatures.

News of the Chechen authorities' actions first spread in late March, and was confirmed by a Russian newspaper known for its investigative reporting, Novaya Gazeta, on April 1, according to the New York Times. The Russian paper reported that more than 100 gay men had been detained "in connection with their nontraditional sexual orientation, or suspicion of such," after authorities identified them by posing as men looking for dates on social networking sites.

The men are reportedly being held in "camps" where they are enduring torture and beatings, according to British newspaper The Independent, who also reports that the spokesperson for Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov has denied the claims to Russian news agency Interfax, citing the fact that no one in Chechnya is homosexual.

"If such people existed in Chechnya, law enforcement would not have to worry about them, since their own relatives would have sent them to where they could never return," the spokesman told Interfax.

- NY Daily News

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