Chechnya Updates

Guest Author: Proceeds from Jo Tannah’s The Way You Look Tonight help gay Chechens

I was thrilled when Jo Tannah told me last month that she wanted to participate in Books Save Lives with two titles — including one that she'd previously published with Wayward Ink, The Way You Look Tonight. Books Save Lives is a project of Readers & Writers for LGBT Chechens that raises funds for the Russian LGBT Network and other charities helping gay men escape Chechnya, where police are currently conducting a campaign of terror against anyone they suspect of being gay. Here's an interview I did with Jo last February when The Way You Look Tonight first came out.

Chechnya: Part of ‘a global fight for our rights as queer people’

Lately, one of my favorite times of day is checking out all the blogs that are talking about ways to save the lives of LGBT Chechens. Back before the internet, few of us would have known about what's going on in Chechnya, and fewer of us would have been in a position to help. But that's all changed. We may not be able to change government policies or social prejudices in one fell swoop, but we can provide real, tangible assistance to many of the men who've been swept up in Chechnya's anti-gay purge — men who would have had no place to turn only a few years ago. Here are a few excerpts from the blogs I visited this morning.

LGBT book bloggers on Chechnya: ‘We need to shine a light.’

Thanks to My Fiction Nook, Diverse Reader, and authors Annabeth Leong, Lisabet Sarai and Sarah Hadley Brook for drawing attention to the situation in Chechnya and the Readers & Writers for LGBT Chechens fundraising auction. Annabeth wrote a post on her author blog that did a great job of capturing one of the things we're trying to do at Readers & Writers for LGBT Chechens — build up people's spirits with great queer stories while dealing with tough realities that continue to threaten our community.

Book Review: Falling for a Pirate by Meredith Bond | Proceeds help gay Chechens

"How can I be more kind?" It's a question at the heart of the poetry of Hafez, a Sufi mystic often quoted by pirate captain Salim al-Mandri, the beloved in this time-travel romance. And it becomes a crucial question for our hero Dylan, who's not sure how to square his affection for Salim with his revulsion for violence. Falling for a Pirate by Meredith Bond is an adventurous romance with a philosophical soul.

Forty gay men saved from Chechnya purge by Russian LGBT Network | NPR & PinkNews

The Russian LGBT Network is saving the lives of gay/bi Chechens, and those perceived to be gay. In an audio interview with NPR, the network's communications director talked about the dozens of men they have helped evacuate from Chechnya over the past month or so, as well as the Russian government's inaction. She said that international pressure has led to some minimal response, and that more pressure could help. So get involved!
1 2 4
Chechnya map with rainbow flag

Designated Charities

  • Russian LGBT Network —  Organization working directly with LGBT Chechens.
  • ILGA-Europe — organization providing funds to LGBT/humanitarian organizations in the Russian Federation who are helping LGBT Chechens get to safety
  • Help Save the Lives of LGBT Chechens — FAQ that answers common questions Westerners might have about the effectiveness of LGBT humanitarian aid in Chechnya and the Russian Federation.
  • Rainbow Railroad — Canadian organization working with the Russian LGBT Network to get fleeing Chechens to countries where they will be safer.
  • American Friends of Rainbow Railroad — A fundraising organization for Rainbow Railroad. U.S. taxpayers who want to deduct a charitable donation from their income taxes can donate here.

Donations Sent So Far

#FF0000 Raised 10,326 $ towards the 11,500 $ target.

Do you want to buy books in German and have the proceeds go to help LGBT Chechens? Look for #autor4tschetschenien on Twitter and Facebook.

Möchtest Du Bücher auf Deutsch kaufen und das Geld dazu bringen, LGBT Tschetschenen zu helfen? Suche nach #autor4tschetschenien auf Twitter und Facebook.