Activists in Chechnya say there has been a devastating purge against LGBT people
in the predominantly Muslim Russian republic. The Russian LGBT Network, an activist group, believe it started after the arrest of an administrator of an online LGBT group on social media network VKontakte. It is estimated that 40 people have been detained with two dying from torture, according to witnesses. There are also claims that police have seized the travel documents
Another serious purge against Chechnya's LGBT community occurred in February 2017 with an estimated 100 people rounded up and three dying. Victims have anonymously reported being tortured with beatings and electric shocks. Ramzan Kadyrov, Chechnya's authoritarian leader, has denied consistent allegations about human rights abuses and illegal detentions. A government spokesman also dismissed the latest reports as "complete lies".