Arrest, photo: Yelena Sineok,

02 July 2024, 23:23

Dagestani gay man leaves Russia after being forced to denunciation

After an arrest of porn actor Matvei Volodin, law enforcers in Dagestan launched a campaign against gay men and organized raids against them. Yusuf, one of the detainees, left Russia after he was forced to agree to cooperate with the law enforcement bodies.

Yusuf (name changed) was detained on the same night as gay blogger Matvei Volodin was arrested when leaving a special detention facility, the “SK SOS Crisis Group”* reported.

Yusuf explained that he did not know Matvei Volodin and had never even heard of him. As it turned out, law enforcers found Yusuf’s contact in mobile phones of the detainees, after which on June 5 they came to his house and took him with them to the police department. Yusuf was also offered cooperation: he was supposed to communicate with gay men on social networks and invite them to a special apartment.

On the same day, Yusuf contacted human rights defenders, and activists of the “SK SOS Crisis Group”* helped him leave Russia. “I would never in my life be able to do such a thing as to be a bait for gays, and especially so that my friends would suffer because of my actions,” said Yusuf as quoted by the “SK SOS Crisis Group”* in its Telegram channel.

Dagestani blogger Khadjimurad Khanov is involved in the persecution of porn blogger Matvei Volodin, who is diagnosed with AIDS. In May 2024, Khadjimurad Khanov stated that he had gained access to the arrestee’s mobile phone. On June 30, it was reported that Khadjimurad Khanov himself was arrested. The Dagestani blogger connected his arrest with a demand for an apology from a doctor, who asked a patient to remove her niqab during a medical examination.

Earlier, the human rights defenders have reported that after the arrest of gay blogger Matvei Volodin, the police continue to selectively detain people in Dagestan on suspicion of homosexual orientation. A criminal case was instituted against at least one detainee. According to the information of the “SK SOS Crisis Group”*, the detainee and his boyfriend met Matvei Volodin online and came to his apartment. Later, it turned out that there was hidden video surveillance in the apartment.

Matvei Volodin was initially detained in Dagestan for 10 days in an administrative case on petty hooliganism. According to the investigators’ official version, Matvei Volodin allegedly swore obscenely in the city centre. As soon as the blogger left the special detention facility on June 5, he was detained. The human rights defenders found out that a criminal case was instituted against Matvei Volodin under the article on the production and trafficking of pornographic materials, which provides for punishment of up to six years of imprisonment. At the same time, Matvei Volodin is diagnosed with AIDS, but he does not have access to HIV therapy.

*Included by the Russian Ministry of Justice (MoJ) into the register of foreign agents.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on July 2, 2024 at 09:02 pm MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Source: Caucasian Knot

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