The human being shall be the highest value in the Republic of Armenia. Their dignity, fundamental rights and freedoms must be protected without discrimination. This is the formula for a dignified life for every individual.

Reaching this formula has become a daily struggle for LGBT people.

Both international and national human rights’ defender organizations have regularly recorded that LGBT people are the most vulnerable group in Armenia. Hate crimes and other violations of the rights paired with discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) are detected every year. LGBT people face discrimination in their families, there are calls for violence against them from the highest rostrums of the country.

LGBT people are not inclined to apply to law enforcement bodies in case their rights are violated. They do not trust the police system, they think their proceedings are unnecessarily delayed and the perpetrators are not punished. Most of these criminal cases are delayed or no criminal case is initiated at all. The proceedings of the cases can last for years. Some victims get frustrated and withdraw their complaints during those years. Just a few LGBT individuals decide to stay in their homeland and fight for their rights. Some LGBT individuals are forced to leave the country to protect themselves, but they also continue their struggle from abroad.

Establishing the National Day to Fight for LGBT+ Rights (LGBT+ is an inclusive term for all the identities of sexual diversity), we want to encourage the community to be consistent in exercising their rights and to fight for the restoration of their breached rights. Allies of the LGBT community, parents of LGBT people and LGBT diaspora also play an important role in this process. They support the victims of hate crimes and stimulate them to fight back their rights.

Launching this process today we make a big step towards building the equality of future. It is also important to mention, that LGBT people do not fight for privileges, they fight for the opportunity to fulfill their rights equally with other people.

August 3rd was determined as the National Day to Fight for LGBT+ Rights in Armenia. On August 3, 2018, 9 young people, including several LGBT activists were attacked by more than 20 perpetrators in Shurnukh village which is in the Syunik region. The motive of the attack was the real or presumed SOGI of the victims. The investigative body dismissed the case, but this decision was annulled by the court later. It has been 2 years since the violent attack, but the investigation has not been restarted yet. No aggressor has been accused for the attack. The victims continue to fight for justice in pre-trial bodies and the courts.

Every year on August 3rd we will celebrate The National Day to Fight for LGBT+ Rights. During those celebrations, we are going to organize different events to emphasize the importance of the fights for equality.

This year on August 3rd we will celebrate the establishment of The National Day to Fight for LGBT+ Rights, during which we will publish a video about the meaning of the day.