Russian Rights Group Warns That Detained Gay Men Face ‘Mortal Danger’ In Chechnya

The Russian LGBT Network has warned that two young gay men from Chechnya who were seized in Nizhny Novgorod and driven by car back to the North Caucasus region face “mortal danger.” The Russian NGO reported on its Telegram channel on February 6 that Salekh Magamadov, 18, and a 17-year-old companion had arrived at a police station in Gudermes after being detained by Federal Security Service (FSB) officers earlier this week. The reason for their detentions in Nizhny Novgorod remains unknown, the LGBT Network reported on its website, adding that one of its lawyers was not being granted access to the detainees prior to their interrogation. RFE/RL is not revealing the identity of the second man because he is a minor. The LGBT Network helped both men leave Chechnya and settle in Nizhny Novgorod in July. After police arrived at their apartment on February 4, one of the men contacted the NGO asking for help and its emergency-assistance coordinator reported hearing screaming from unknown people in the background, the LGBT Network wrote on its website. After arriving on the scene, a lawyer for the LGBT Network noticed that a scuffle had taken place in the men’s apartment and was able to confirm that the two men had been detained by police and were being taken by car to Gudermes, Chechnya.