Meer dan 114 LGBTI’s zijn in 2017 uit Tsjetsjenië moeten vluchten omdat ze achtervolgd of gediscrimineerd werden. Hoewel de aantijgingen gestopt zijn, dragen de slachtoffers nog steeds de gevolgen. Daarom werd op woensdag 27 juni 2018 het rapport van Piet De Bruyn unaniem goedgekeurd in het parlement van de Raad van Europa. Parlementsleden uit de 47 lidstaten roepen hun landen op om internationale bescherming te bieden aan deze LGBTI-slachtoffers.

Meer informatie over het rapport vind je op de website van de Raad van Europa.

Lees of herbekijk (vanf 4:39:30) mijn tussenkomst in het debat:

Ms De SUTTER (Belgium) – Protecting all people from torture, irrespective of their origin or sexual orientation, is one of the founding principles behind the creation of the Council of Europe, so recent news about campaigns of persecution against LGBTI people in the Chechen Republic is particularly disturbing. The campaign is the most recent consequence of a climate encouraging homophobic attitudes that has been promoted in the Russian Federation for several years.

At a time when the Russian Federation is trying to enhance its worldwide image, it is the Council of Europe’s duty to emphasise that this unacceptable practice is happening right now. The Russian Federation should understand that such events tarnish its international image, and it should end this discrimination.

Through hosting the World Cup, the Russian Federation has the international media’s attention. All eyes are on Russia, and the media spotlight provides the perfect moment to apply international pressure. A country cannot pretend to be modern as long as it discriminates against its people.

It is therefore our moral duty to support the report of our colleague Piet De Bruyn and its recommendations. Member States should provide international protection to LGBTI people fleeing persecution in the Chechen Republic, as well as to their families and witnesses. There can be no impunity for the perpetrators of this campaign of persecution. The Parliamentary Assembly should call for an effective and impartial investigation.

Let us not forget that it is in times of crisis that minorities are threatened. Let us not take the rights of LGBT people and all our rights for granted, not in the Chechen Republic, not in other countries, and definitely not in Europe.

I thank the Assembly for supporting this seminal report by my colleague and friend Pete De Bruyn.