Chechen gay concentration camp survivor shares his story

Sasha, a gay Chechen man who managed to escape after 11 days inside one of Chechnya's three gay concentration camps shares details of the atrocities being committed under the international community's nose.
Satellite image of one of the camps Photo Credit: Google Maps/Channel 2 News

Sasha, a survivor of a Chechen concentration camp for gay men, revealed to Channel 2 News what is happening a few hours away from Israel: electrocutions, beatings and humiliation. He was imprisoned in the camp for 11 days before he managed to escape to a hiding place in Moscow from which he shares details of what he calls “a second Holocaust” for gay men.

Three camps were set up by Ramzan Kadyrov, the Muslim leader of Chechnya, to imprison and exterminate all homosexual men in his country. The collection is systematic and the goal is clear: by the month of Ramadan there will be no homosexual left in the country.

Sasha described being randomly kidnapped and taken to and locked in a basement with the rest of the brutally beaten and tortured prisoners, many awaiting their execution. Sasha told Channel 2 News he managed to escape because of his personal acquaintance with one of the soldiers in the camp who helped him.  

Ramzan Kadyrov denies planning to exterminate all Chechen homosexuals Photo Credit: Reuters/Channel 2 News

As previously reported by JOL, in response to survivor testimonies about the concentration camps, Kadyrov's spokesperson claimed that since there were no homosexuals in Chechnya there was no need to exterminate them. In the meantime, the world remains content with condemnation while human rights organizations take action. One such organization is the Israel National LGBT Task Force Association which is at the forefront of the struggle and has already launched a series of international diplomatic actions to save these men.

"The Israel LGBT Association calls on the Israeli government and governments around the world to join the struggle and stop these atrocities," says Chen Arieli, chairperson of the association. "We have a moral responsibility in Israel to eradicate such phenomena wherever they happen." Sasha agrees, adding that he expects Jews to understand the situation best and that Israelis should stop their indifference to what is happening.



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