Gay journalist called up for military service in Belarus

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

A gay activist and editor of, Belarus’ biggest LGBT website, has been called up for military duties.

Alexander Paluyan, 23, has so far been exempt for medical reasons.

Members of the Belarusian Initiative for Sexual and Gender Equality have expressed concern about him serving in what is regarded by the group as a largely homophobic army.

Another gay man has also been called up but his identity has been kept a secret.

Paluyan has to report to a military department in Mozyr today (January 9th) where he will learn if he is still be exempt or be told the date he is due to start.

In an email to, activists wrote:

“We are anxious for the physical and psychological health of our friend, colleague and activist.”

An application has been made by the Belarusian Initiative for Sexual and Gender Equality to have a demonstration on January 12th in front of the military department.

They say they want to draw the attention of the authorities to the dangers homosexual men face in the army.

Sergey Androsenko, a representative for the organisation, said:

“It is not safe for an openly gay person to be called up for military duties.”