Kazakhstan: A dozen anti-gay activists have set about building a wall around a gay nightclub In Almaty, Kazakhstan’s biggest city but it is unclear if it is to prevent people from entering or leaving.
The agit-prop wall around the gay nightclub was set up May 15 as a protest against gay marriage, according to freenewspos.com that also added that the owner of the establishment owner has chosen against notifying the police.
The protest comes 10 days after Kazakh authorities announced an investigation into the brutal killing of Kristina Chernysheva, an Astana woman who was in an unofficial same-sex marriage.
The marriage last year was widely reported as Kazakhstan’s first ‘gay marriage.’ Same-sex relations were decriminalized in the 1990s in Kazakhstan, a Muslim-majority country, but marriage among same-sex couples is neither legal nor recognized.
Three women were arrested after Chernysheva’s body was found dismembered and burned. Those arrested included the victim’s partner, according to the BBC.
The protests as well as the arrests comes at a time when Russia’s anti-gay stance has been sweeping through its borders and into neighboring countries of Central Asia, once part of the Soviet Union.
Russia assumed the Soviet Union’s rights and obligations and is recognized as its continued legal personality after its collapse and still wields a lot of influence.
While Russia recently passed a bill banning “homosexual propaganda,” meaning no one can talk to minors about the mere existence of gay people or hold pride parades and rallies, Kazakhstan has begun to imitate Russia’s anti-gay stance.
Kazakhstan, which shares a northern border with Russia, has conducted “special themed sessions and round tables” regarding punishment for “lesbianism and other aspects of the sexual and gender sphere,” according to a deputy in the Kazakh lower house of parliament.
Another deputy has also called for a similar Russian style propaganda-banning bill in Kazakhstan, saying, “This phenomenon [of same-sex relations] damages the image of our country and its domestic policy.”