In Mongolia, it isn’t easy for a gay bar to fly under the radar, even in the center of Ulaanbaatar, the country’s biggest city, home to more than a third of Mongolia’s total population of 2.8 million. Outside the city, the steppes are home to some of the world’s last nomadic people. When the country was under Soviet rule from 1921 to 1990, all non-heteronormative expression of sexuality was taboo. Until 1989, homosexuality was illegal and punishable by imprisonment. Gay life in Mongolia is still far from easy. For many Mongolians, gay visibility is seen as an invasion, a foreign influence corrupting traditional life. Bullying at school remains prevalent, labor discrimination is rife, police hostility abounds and healthcare and social services are frequently withheld.
June 3 / Gawker