Version on NL.

Aslan has an asylum procedure walk in our country, but to live a normal life seemed to him still far off.‘First I have my own thoughts in order.” Image Damon De Backer.

Aslan was gewaterboard because he is gay.For the first time in Flemish media was demonstrated by a Chechenian about the witch-hunt his government on homosexuals has opened.‘I am on earth or in heaven? I have no idea.’

“The police arrested me on my work,” says Aslan. The Chechenian ran never with his homosexuality to purchase, but a so-called friend verklikte him in to the authorities. “On the citra I got from the chief of police, a donderpreek and some clapping in my face. in the Evening, I was blindfolded to a different place. I was in a dark, cold room dropped.”

Thus begins the story of the Chechen asylum seeker, that on the question of Flemish member of Parliament, Piet De Bruyn (N-VA) yesterday to the parliament has come to testify to the manhunt of Chechnya on gays.The parliamentary assembly has recently unanimously approved a resolution that the human rights violations in the autonomous Russian republic condemns.

The first reports of a ‘purification’ by the Chechen authorities began in april 2017.Meanwhile, according to human rights organisations, surely 140 men and women imprisoned because of their sexual orientation, or because they are suspected of being gay.At the beginning of this year, there was a large wave of arrests.

Five people were certainly the life, dozens are tortured. Also Aslan. “Up to three times per day, I was sent to a torture chamber. First, I received electric shocks administered, and later they asked about waterboarding. They tied a cloth over my face and poured water on, which I could no longer breathe. (with emotion) That image is forever on my retinas.”

Other victims of the Chechenian never seen or heard of, outside a few scream.“But after a few seconds, it was nipped in the bud.”If you call, we will take you to graze’, warned the guards.Now, a lot of what is there said is, I don’t remember more.During and after the torture, everything was blurry.”

Aslan thought he always was locked up, but thanks to his family, he was released.Sixteen kilos skinnier, he fled a few days later from Chechnya.He finds it hard to grasp that he is still alive: “I am on earth or in heaven?I have no idea.You say that I live, but people with my experience of life according to me not more.”

He indicates that he initially a lot of drinking.To forget.“My days consisted of drinking and sleeping, drinking and sleeping.Alcohol, I thankfully now banned.The days go by, but don’t ask me how.Usually I get to sleep, but I shoot at least three times awake.Last night I could not sleep, I was too nervous for this conversation.I trust no one, except a companion who I through the internet have come to know.He pressed me on the heart that Piet De Bruyn the best for us.Therefore I have agreed.”

De Bruyn (N-VA) was until January a General Reporter for the rights of the LGBT community to the Council Of Europe, an intergovernmental organisation whose aim is human rights protection.In June last year, was his report on Chechnya adopted in the Council of Europe.The consequences of that report continued to be limited, the organisation is a toothless tiger.

Nevertheless, the Flemish member of Parliament the situation in Chechnya closely and he has also had multiple victims meet: “Their story can not be stressed enough.Therefore, I have Aslan invited to my parliamentary colleagues about his ordeal to tell.”

According to De Bruyn the federal government in Russia more on his responsibilities disclaim.The spokesman of minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders (MR), counterbalances and says toThe Morning that he continually does: “The minister map the situation in any contact with his Russian counterpart.In February they talked about during the veiligheidsconferentie in Munich.Both within the EU and the UN, Belgium will have a proactive human rights policy, especially for the lgbt.”

“However, the Russians deny that there is a problem”, says De Bruyn.“There was one formal complaint filed by a victim, but a preliminary investigation that Russia started, was never finally completed.That there is but one formal complaint, it has everything to do with the fear that when the victims is to file a complaint.A fear that not only their own life but also that of their family.”

To his family to protect Aslan any more contact with them. In the future, which he is not: “That seems to me at this time is futile.”

The Chechenian has an asylum procedure walk. Under former secretary of state for Asylum and Migration Theo Francken (N-VA) had five gay men from Chechnya already has a visa. De Bruyn: “One returned under pressure from the family back home. The other four are now pretty well established.”

A settled life: Aslan can currently only dream of.“Or I hope to ever find love?That is currently the last of my worries.First I have my own thoughts in order, learn the language also.At this moment, I am living very isolated.I have barely any contact with people.A phone I do not have, a Instagram profile, certainly not.I go a lot of walking and try to forget.”

Aslan is a pseudonym.

We’re inviting you to make a difference today by donating to the Chechyna Appeal.

Every dollar, euro and pound you give will help evacuate LGBTI people in the most danger. And to pressure the Chechen authorities to stop this persecution.