Amnesty International Reports the Rise of Homophobia in Armenia

Amnesty International Reports the Rise of Homophobia in Armenia

In December 2017, Amnesty International published a new report on significant rise of homophobia in post-soviet countries. The report entitled “Less equal: LGBTI human rights defenders in Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan” explores the new wave of discrimination towards LGBTI community in four former Soviet Union countries, as well as intolerance within the LGBTI community.  

The report particularly emphasizes Russia’s influence in this field, as all four countries are Russia’s closest allies in the region. According to Amnesty International, over the past years Russian state media outlets have adopted homophobic rhetoric while the government was accused of oppression practices.  

Deputy Director for Europe and Central Asia at Amnesty International Denis Krivosheev said that the reach of Russian media “has played a significant role in further worsening the situation for LGBTI groups in the region”.

According to the report, intolerance in Armenia forces large number of people to leave the country. “Discrimination against LGBTI people is an important factor motivating high levels of migration from within the community. A study in 2015 estimated that between 2011 and 2013, almost 6000 LGBTI persons left Armenia, many permanently”, the report states.