Policemen take away a rainbow flag from a participant of a rally in Baku, March 2022. Photo by Aziz Karimov for the Caucasian Knot

07 July 2022, 08:25

Threats to members of sexual minorities alarm Baku townspeople

Authorities fail to make due efforts to investigate crimes against sexual minorities and are unable to prevent attacks on them in public places, Baku residents and activists have stated.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that the 39-year-old Baku resident, Roman Mamedov, recorded a video with threats against LGBT people, after which he was detained by the police; and a criminal case was opened against him for hooliganism, the Azeri Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) has reported.

The detention of the author of the video does not mean the end of threats against members of sexual minorities, Ali Melikov, an LGBT activist, has pointed out. In his opinion, authorities are to blame for the current situation, since they fail to inquire into murders of members of sexual minorities. "Many cases of violence against sexual minorities have gone unpunished; social networks are calling for repressions against us; and the state is not prosecuting for these offences," Ali Melikov told the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent.

Fatima Movlanly, another activist, said that the threats had worried Baku residents. "People are confused and alarmed. LGBT people, against whom [the author of the videos] has spoken out, are especially intimidated," Ms Movlanly has stated.

Residents of Baku have shared their fears in the Facebook* social network. "Those responsible for his appearance in the subway should be identified and punished; and the man's act should be given a legal assessment," Turgai Djavadzade has stated. "At other times, policemen are yelling at us when we forget to put our bags on the examination tape. How could this man bring an axe into the subway? And how could he so calmly videotaped the threats?" the user S. Mamedova has asked.

*On March 21, 2022, the Tverskoi Court of Moscow banned the activities of the "Meta" Company (that owns the Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp) in Russia in connection with extremist activities.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on July 6, 2022 at 09:27 pm MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Kyamal Ali Source: CK correspondent

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