Leaders from the ruling Georgian Dream party have criticised American rights watchdog Freedom House, for suggesting democracy declined in the country in 2017. ‘Absurd, unobjective and amusing’ were some of the words PM Giorgi Kvirikashvili and Parliament chairman Irakli Kobakhidze used to describe their 2018 Nations in Transit report, which said informal governance was ‘one of the key features of GD’s rule’. [Read more…]
Democracy declines in the Caucasus with ‘half-hearted reforms’ in Georgia, improper investigation of high-level corruption in Armenia, ‘deeply entrenched’ authoritarianism in Azerbaijan, and a crackdown on queer people in the North Caucasus, according to American right group Freedom House’s Nations in Transit 2018 report. [Read more…]
Georgia’s public defender has called on the government to legally recognise same-sex relationships, for example with civil partnerships. In their 2017 report, the public defender also denounced recent constitutional changes defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman. [Read more…]
Georgian police have issued a restraining order against the parents of a lesbian woman, after they tried to ‘cure her of lesbianism’, a women’s rights group has said.
Queer rights activism has come a long way in Georgia, but faced with rising homophobia, cooperation within the movement is crucial now more than ever. [Read more…]
International queer rights group All Out, together with the Russian LGBT Network, have launched an online campaign urging Russian authorities to investigate the disappearance of Chechen singer Zelimkhan Bakayev. #JusticeForZelim launched on 8 January — five months after his disappearance.
Two teenagers have committed suicide in Azerbaijan, reportedly after facing homophobic pressure. Nefes LGBT Azerbaijan Alliance, a local rights group, reported on 14 November that the reason behind both deaths was pressure from their families and others. [Read more…]
Russia’s Human Rights Commissioner Tatyana Moskalkova has said there are sufficient grounds to open a criminal case into Chechnya’s persecution of queer people, according to Russian news agency TASS. While human rights activists are continuing to push for a case to be launched, the Chechen authorities have continued to deny all accusations.
A number of Georgian football players and officials have joined Guram Kashia in support of queer rights in Georgia. Far-right groups have rallied in response, against what they term ‘gay propaganda’. [Read more…]