In the face of international debate on LGBTQ rights and during Pride Month, a politician in Uzbekistan has suggested stripping queer and trans people of their citizenship and deporting them.
Alisher Kadyrov, leader of the central Asian nation’s National Revival party, claimed that deportation would solve the issue by forcing other countries to take LGBTQ refugees.
The politician said that despite social change, Uzbekistan would never accept LGBTQ people, Pink News has reported.
“When I put forward this proposal on social networks, up to 100 LGBT people got in touch with me and agreed with what I had said,” Kadyrov said.
“They said that they cannot get visas from those countries that condemn Uzbekistan for its attitude towards LGBT people.
“LGBT people are targeted with violence, but I do not support that. I believe that this is a provocation.
“We have to solve this problem and my solution is international practice.
“There are 26 countries that practice deportation. In Iran and Saudi Arabia, they envision the death penalty.”
Uzbekistan is among more than 60 countries that still criminalise homosexuality.
Kadyrov has not given details on how the proposed deportation program would work or how LGBTQ people would be identified.
A report this year by Human Rights Watch found that gay and bisexual men in Uzbekistan face arbitrary detention, prosecution, imprisonment, and homophobic threats and violence.
Other countries also continue to persecute LGBTQ people.
The Australian Government has been called on to enact sanctions against such regions, including Chechnya, where the government has been accused of conducting a “gay purge”, torturing and killing LGBTQ people in concentration camps over at least five years.
Towns in Poland have suffered from sanctions by members of the European Union over their homophobic and transphobic laws, with over 100 local government areas declaring themselves “LGBT-free zones”.