Video: Gay Kyrgyzstani men discuss their ‘abuse and torture’ by police

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

Human Rights Watch has released a video showing gay victims of extortion, rape and torture by police in Kyrgyzstan recounting their experiences.

A report published yesterday found that gay and bisexual men in Kyrgyzstan face blackmail, beatings, illegal detentions and even rape from the police force.

They report was the result of detailed interviews with gay and bisexual men across Kyrgyzstan, and alleges that police specifically target gay men in parks, gay clubs, hotel rooms, and on dating websites.

In the video, one man, Demetra, recounts how police arrested him and put a plastic bag over his head, before “abusing and torturing” him.

Another, Mikhail Kudryashov, was abducted by police, and was abused with a beer bottle and metal coat hangers.

He said: “They gave me a piece of paper and told me to report on my friends. I refused to write, then one of the officers pulled out a pen and stabbed me in the hand.”

Mikhail complained about the incidents, but the Supreme Court dismissed his case, and as a result of the publicity lost his job, was disowned by his family, and was excommunicated by his church.

Anna Kirey, a researcher for Human Rights Watch, said: “The police know these men have too much to lose if their friends or family or employers find out that they’re gay. They know that they can do it with impunity”

Sex between men was decriminalised in the state in 1998.