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Chechnya’s leader banned from entering the US

The US government has announced numerous sanctions against Russian officials

By Joshua Haigh

Ramzan Kadyrov has been banned from entering the US. 

The Chechen leader, who is responsible for the country’s shocking anti-gay purge that has left LGBT+ people in fear for their lives, will not be allowed to enter the US under new sanctions announced this week. 

It comes a whopping eight months after the first reports of the horrific human right’s abuses broke from the European country. 

Under the Magnitsky act, a number of Russian officials will no longer be allowed to enter the country due to the human rights abuses. 

Anyone included on the list has had their US assets frozen, and they will be turned away by officials if they try and fly to the US. 

Responding to the news, Sarah Kate Ellis, President and CEO of GLAAD said: “Sanctioning those responsible for the horrendous anti-LGBTQ persecution in Chechnya, including Ramzan Kadyrov, is a step towards holding human rights abusers accountable for their atrocities and was a needed action to show that human rights must be prioritized above the personal politics of this administration.

“We cannot stop here as we face a growing epidemic of anti-LGBTQ violence and discrimination around the world that must be swiftly and fully addressed.”

Despite the shocking reports regarding the torture and murder of gay men in the country at the hands of officials, President Donald Trump has yet to officially comment. 

The US State Department said in a statement previously: “We are aware of troubling reports that local authorities in the Republic of Chechnya have arrested or detained more than 100 men, as well as reports that three of those detained were killed.

“We condemn violence against any individuals based on their sexual orientation or any other basis. We urge the Russian government to conduct an independent and credible investigation into the alleged killings and mass arrests, and hold the perpetrators responsible. We were likewise deeply disturbed by local authorities statements that apparently condone and even incite violence against LGBTI persons.

“We are very concerned by the widespread discrimination and violence against LGBTI persons in Russia or any society. We call on the Russian government to protect all people from discrimination and violence, and allow the free exercise of the freedoms of expression, association, peaceful assembly, and religion or belief.”