Belarusians who are tolerant to the LGBT community are a minority now.
The Ministry of Internal Affairs of Belarus may have provoked the launch of a new movement. Hashtag #НеПодделка (NoFake) in social networks became the answer of the Belarusians, indignant with the position of the local siloviki.
Over 700 people have signed a petition against the homophobic statement of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. Activists, human rights activists and ordinary citizens are outraged by the reaction of the ministry to the rainbow flag over the British Embassy in Minsk.
“LGBTQ+ people are equal members of the Belarusian society. Their rights and freedoms are regulated by the Constitution and legislation of the Republic of Belarus. The Ministry of Internal Affairs is one of those bodies that must protect these rights and the right to honor and dignity,” said Aleg Razhkou from the “Journalists for Tolerance” initiative.
But instead of protection we see an attack. “We support the real thing!” said the statement of the Ministry of Internal Affairs on the page of the department the day before.
“Representatives of same-sex relationships fiercely defend their position, despite the foundations and traditions that have developed in society. Whatever one may say, same-sex relationships are a fake. And the essence of fake is always the same — the devaluation of truth. The LGBT community and all this struggle for “their rights”, and the day of the community itself, are just a fake!” the statement of the Ministry of Internal Affairs says.
This is the official response to the rainbow flag, which appeared on the British Embassy in Minsk on May 17. On this day, the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biophobia is celebrated.
“Great Britain is committed to the principle of non-discrimination on any grounds, including on grounds of sexual orientation and / or gender identity. We are determined to promote and protect the rights of LGBT people,” the British representation in Minsk wrote on its Facebook page.
Last year, the International Association of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersexuals estimated the level of equality and respect of Belarusians to LGBT at 13% out of 100%. According to the Satio research center, seven out of ten Belarusians find it unacceptable to live next to a homosexual person.
In conversation with “Belsat” the people of Brest said that they did not want “such people to walk along the streets with their children” and that “this contradicts our Orthodox, Christian faith, and in our society there is no place for them” and that “this is pathology”.
This position fully corresponds to the official one. The non-acceptance of homosexuals has been broadcast from the very top for two decades. The head of Belarus stated that he “does not like gays” and promised not to have in Belarus “either the gay or the pink.”
“It is better to be a dictator than a gay,” Lukashenka once said.
The collection of signatures under a letter to the Prosecutor General’s Office and the Ministry of Internal Affairs demanding to verify the legality of the agency’s statements appeared on the Petitions.by in response to a statement by the Ministry of Internal Affairs.
“Such kind of homophobic statements of the Ministry of Internal Affairs are another populist message that the West will not get the best of us, and this discourse about human rights is far away. This suggests that they do not understand what human rights are for and what it can lead to,” said LGBT activist Andrei Zavaley.
And it can lead to tragedy like the one that happened in 2014. The 35-year-old Mikhail Pishcheusky was beaten after a gay party. A year later he died in hospital.