LGBTQ Ukrainians Fear Violation of Human Rights Amidst Russian Invasion

The LGBTQ community in Ukraine are fearing the violation of their human rights during the worrying escalation of the Russian Invasion.

Credit: The Daily Beast

They are standing their ground, as according to CBS News, saying “We will fight.”

The community feels as though their human rights are at risk in the insidious, spine-shivering possibility that Russia will occupy the country during a full-scale invasion. According to CBS, the main stem of fear comes from the fact that Russia persecutes LGBTQI+ people. 

Colliding Ideologies

Russia’s strict right-wing authoritarian government promotes pillars of Christian Orthodoxy and family values. Russia additionally banned same-sex marriage in 2021, whereas Ukraine is currently working towards this right.

Credit: The Guardian

To emphasise, Russia illegalised the promotion of “gay propaganda”, or any form of protest in 2013. An 18-year-old law student tells CBS News, 

“If we imagine that Russia occupies all of the Ukraine or just a big part of the country, they won’t allow us to exist peacefully and to fight for our rights as we are able to do that in Ukraine right now.” 

Kyiv, Ukraine has a progressing population that supports equality among the masses, regardless of sexual orientation. The project assistant for Kyiv Pride tells CBS his concerns about the different cultural and political outlooks of the opposing countries “We have totally different paths.” He explains. “We see the changes in people’s thoughts about human rights, LGBTQ, feminism and so on … So definitely we don’t want anything connected to Russia … and we won’t have them.”

Fears Of A Diminishing Democracy

Credit: Radio Free Europe

Fellow Ukrainians haven’t given up on hope which they are placing in the advancing Ukrainian army. Which has reached a maximum in its history of donations. The fear invasion is heartbreaking for those fighting for the acceptance of their identity and personal freedoms. It’s impossible to imagine in a 21st-century civil society. A woman told CBS that imprisonment would be better than the reality of Russia taking over. The United States found a letter composed to the United Nations. It contained Russia’s “kill list” of Ukrainians to be targeted. With names of specific journalists, religious and ethnic minorities, human rights activities and LGBTQ Ukrainians.  

A member of the Kyiv-LGBTQ NAsh Svit Center tells Metroweekly, 

“Now we have only two options: either we defend our country, and it will become a part of the free world, or there will not be any freedom for us and will not be Ukraine at all.”

On @tiktok_uk live, Edward Reese from @KyivPride talks about working with other European LGBTQ+ organisations to help refugees. He says that “We all come together, we all fight together.”

Credit: Twitter
The reversal and deterioration of democracy is the major fear concerning social and political life in Ukraine. According to Chicago Reader, a trans-woman who preferred to remain anonymous as she hasn’t come out states, “I’m scared for my family and a backsliding of democracy … We have been worried that this would happen since 2014 when Russia invaded Crimea.”

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