Rumours of violent new anti-queer group spark worry in Azerbaijan

29 March 2021
Photo via Minorityaze.

According to a popular Telegram channel, a recently established group called ‘Clean Blood’ aims at finding and physically attacking people of a ‘non-traditional sexual orientation’.

Word of the new group appears to have begun with a post made on a popular Russian-language telegram channel on 20 March.  

‘A youth movement called “Clean Blood” (Təmiz Qan) is being established in Baku, which aims to beat people of non-traditional sexual orientation. Finally, a normal movement’, the post reads.

In over 2600 comments below the post, the Telegram channel’s members expressed largely homophobic and often violent sentiments. ‘They (queer people) should be burned’, one comment reads. ‘If we do not fight them, our future will be destroyed’, reads another. 

According to Minority magazine, a queer online magazine covering Azerbaijan, users of Hornet, a queer dating app, are already urging each other to be careful.

Vahid Aliyev from Nafas LGBT Azerbaijan Alliance, an Azerbaijani queer rights group, told OC Media that users of the app are telling each other not to share any information that might reveal one’s identity, and to perhaps avoid meeting any unknown individuals that they meet via the app. 

The existence of such a group has not been confirmed.

Aliyev also noted errors in the initial post, which stated that the ‘Clean Blood’ group was being ‘reestablished’. 

‘We never had such a group in Azerbaijan before’, Aliyev said. He added that he suspects this to be a result of the ‘influence of Russian and Chechen “gay hunts”’. 

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