Every year, Pink Human Rights Defender NGO documents human rights violations and cases of discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
During 2020, the organization provided 371 legal counselings, 40 of which concerned violations based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
From January to November 2021, 308 counselings were provided and 29 violations based on actual or presumed sexual orientation or gender identity were reported. The offenders beat the victims, threatened them with weapons, and exerted psychological pressure while insulting and humiliating them.
Cases of disclosure of the sexual orientation or gender identity of LGBT people have been recorded, not only by individuals but also by governmental bodies. There have been cases where offenders extorted money from the victims in exchange for not disclosing information on their personal lives to the victims’ family members. In some cases, LGBT people were not allowed to use certain public services. They were also denied access to entertainment venues and refused to be served in grocery stores.
The number of domestic violence cases against LGBT people poses a great concern. 13 out of the 29 registered violation cases were cases of domestic violence. LGBT people have been subjected to physical, psychological, and financial violence by their family members and relatives.
Despite the severity of harassment cases against LGBT people, it is important to note that the victims avoid reporting to law enforcement forces to restore their rights. Only eight of the overall registered cases were reported to the law enforcement bodies (three of them are cases of domestic violence, five are criminal cases). It should be noted that this is due to a lack of trust regarding law enforcement bodies. LGBT people often think that their reports will not be processed and the perpetrators will not be punished. Moreover, they believe that it would further anger the perpetrators which will endanger them as the criminals would seek revenge.
Another reason for not appealing to law enforcement forces is that LGBT people face discrimination and insensitivity within these institutions. It should be noted that the concerns of LGBT people are substantiated. Three out of the four reported crimes were not processed or the criminal cases were terminated, and the organization has no information about the fourth crime. As for the domestic violence cases, two out of the three reported cases only resulted in a warning towards the perpetrator.
LGBT people do not feel protected, their human rights are regularly violated, and due to distrust in law enforcement forces, LGBT people do not report to the relevant authorities to protect their rights.
The Republic of Armenia is obliged to ensure an environment where individuals are not subjected to differential treatment and discrimination based on their characteristics, sexual orientation, or gender identity.