Azerbaijan is the most homophobic country in Europe. LGBT Survey Results » LGBT Azerbaijan Gay.Az
Azerbaijan is the most homophobic country in Europe. LGBT Survey Results
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Azerbaijan is the most homophobic country in Europe. LGBT Survey Results

Azerbaijan is the most homophobic country in Europe, according to the rating of the ILGA-Europe organization, and since 2015. Nevertheless, officials have repeatedly stated that there is no discrimination, and the same opinion can often be found on social networks and on forums.

The first information and educational resource for LGBT citizens of Azerbaijan, Gay.Az, conducted a survey to find out whether representatives of the LGBT community are really under pressure in Azerbaijan, and if so, to what pressure.

There are no laws in Azerbaijan that discriminate against LGBT people. In 2000, homosexual relations were decriminalized. But there are no laws protecting LGBT people either. And representatives of the authorities most often pretend that LGBT people simply do not exist, or they argue that all the rights of citizens are respected in the country.

And even when independent media reported that police unexpectedly raided LGBT people and detained at least 50 people, officials said it was “just a raid to detain sex workers.”

Homophobic statements often appear in the Azerbaijani media; public figures and politicians allow themselves to do so without harm to their future careers. Social networks now and then deny the problem of pressure on LGBT people, saying that "in fact, no one touches them."

The representatives of the LGBT community we interviewed most often disagree with this.

The survey involved 447 people.

To the question: “Who knows about your orientation” about nine percent of the respondents answered: “All” and about three answered: “No one”. The most popular answers are “one or two people” (43.2 percent) and “close friends” (28.2 percent). Parents knew about the orientation of the respondent in 8.5 percent of cases, colleagues - 12.8 percent.

The overwhelming majority of respondents were subjected to violence because of their orientation - 92.4 percent. 80 percent of those surveyed report that violence has recurred repeatedly.

With regard to the nature of the violence, 7.2 percent of those surveyed reported sexual violence, 30.7 percent - about beatings, more than half - 55.6 percent - about insults, and about one in five - 19.5 percent - were boycotted.

When asked who exactly committed the violence, the majority of respondents (38.5 percent) answered that they were strangers. 32.2 percent - that they were relatives, 26.4 percent - peers, 15.9 percent - neighbors.

The victims most often did not turn to anyone for help - 60 percent of the respondents.

If we extrapolate these results to the rest of the LGBT community in Azerbaijan, it turns out that its typical representative

  • hides his orientation from everyone except a couple of closest friends;
  • has been repeatedly subjected to psychological or physical abuse;
  • forced to cope with the problems on their own without the hope of law enforcement and without family support.

When asked to tell more about what happened, the respondents shared the following stories:

“I was subjected to pressure and psychological abuse on social networks and in everyday life. No matter how much I say that I don't care, sometimes it is unbearably bad. "

“My relatives illegally took over my data from my phone, read my correspondence and blackmailed me. It happened a couple of times, they insulted me on the street. "

“Penalty for kissing a girl in the park. Threats from law enforcement officers to show the photo taken secretly to relatives if we do not pay the fine. They took 50 manats (about $ 30) ”.

“The police threatened to take me to the police station and tell my relatives. They took 30 manats (about $ 17), near the Nagorny Park. "

"The police got caught and demanded money to be released."

“Nonsense, there is no discrimination in the country and no one offends anyone. This site is a disgrace to Azerbaijan! "

As the head of the NGO Gender and Development noted in his comment for Gay.Az, Kamran Rzayev: “First of all, most people from the LGBT community are subjected to pressure in their families. This can be verbal and physical abuse after coming out (often forced when someone else tells the family), house arrest, or forced marriage. Often young people are kicked out of their homes, thereby pushing them to engage in sex work "".

There is also pressure from society - rejection, misunderstanding, bullying, beating. Dismissals happen if they learn about orientation at work.

Society as a whole does not have information about who LGBT people are, they are afraid and do not understand. Parents are afraid that their children will “become the same”. I think our media should work on this problem, educate people. Then the pressure from the society will decrease.

There is also police pressure. Most of all goes to those who are engaged in sex work. Sometimes it happens that the police "catch" gay men on dating sites in order to blackmail. Now this happens less often than a few years ago.

There were many cases when we were asked for help, and we were ready to provide a lawyer and help solve the problem in court. But people refuse because they are afraid of publicity.

For the situation to change, the LGBT community must understand that until it begins to claim their rights, no one will solve this problem for them. We need precedents of won court cases that would scare off the aggressors. We need to mobilize and start acting on our own. ”

Due to lack of funding, the article was translated by google translator. Gay.Az editors apologize for the inconvenience*
Balukhin Ruslan


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Зара Гости 3 September 2021 18:57
Автор статьи,абсолютно прав, нужно с этим бороться, на правовой арене. Но с заголовком не согласна...в Польше дела обстоят чуть ли не в разу хуже, просто не так открыто, в основном ЕС в курсе их проблем.
Улькер Сеидбейли Посетители 18 October 2021 16:32
Зара, мне кажется, что там (Польша, etc)  ЛГБТ+  хотя бы видимы, чего о нас сказать совсем нельзя.