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LGBT people continue to be subjected to violence

Discriminatory attitudes towards LGBT people in society make them hide their sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) even from family members; they are concerned that disclosure of their SOGI to family members can lead to psychological and physical pressure. In 2020 two cases of domestic violence against LGBT people have been reported in the first half of January:

1. The members of the young gay man’s family, mother, grandmother, and uncle, who have learned about his homosexuality, deprived his access to phone, computer, and did not allow him to leave home alone by supervising his actions. Demanded to end homosexual relationships, threatened to turn to the police for criminal prosecution of his partner for alleged sexual abuse of a minor,

2. The family members of the bisexual woman, the mother and the brothers, who have learned about her homosexual relationship, demanded to end the relationship or leave the home when the victim was not working and could not take care of herself. The claims were accompanied by disputes and offensive expressions about her sexual orientation.

In both cases, the victims preferred not to apply to law enforcement bodies, unwilling to file a complaint against their family members and consider the violence against them insignificant. It should be noted that under the legislation of Republic of Armenia cases of domestic violence are being investigated if the victim makes such complaint, except the cases when the victim cannot personally file a complaint because of their helplessness or dependence on the abuser, as well as if the abuse involves another crime, which is investigated in general order and in this case no need for a victim to file a complaint.

This leads to the fact that domestic violence against LGBT people on the basis of their SOGI remains undisclosed, with no real number being recorded, which does not allow for effective mechanisms to reduce violence. On the other hand, perpetrators experience a sense of impunity, which increases the risk of violence being repeated.

There have been one cases of personal privacy disclosure. An employer of a gay person found out about his homosexual relationships, informed other employees of the organization and started to make unpleasant comments about it by using offensive expressions. A complaint has been filed with the police; the case is under preliminary investigation.

In another case, the perpetrator used a fake social network account to socialize with the victim, a gay man. The perpetrator introduced himself as gay and arranged to meet to discuss their sexuality. The victim approached the meeting place in the evening, saw that no one was there, and cars were moving in his direction. He also noticed sticks in the hands of people in the car, one of them was holding brass knuckles. The victim has heard some conversations saying: “it” (probably referring to the victim) should be carried out; he tried to leave the area, heard laughter behind him. The victim sent a text message to the perpetrator, saying he would turn to the police, after which the offender deactivated his page and the cars left the area. The victim did not want to apply to the law enforcement bodies.