ILGA-Europe welcome landmark decision by Kazakhstan’s Supreme Court to uphold the privacy of a lesbian couple

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09/04/2019

A controversial case that took a year and a half for Kazakhstan’s court system to hear has turned out to be the first legal victory for LGBTIQ rights in Kazakhstan. In January 2018, two young women (unnamed for ethical reasons) were filmed kissing at a cinema in the city of Almaty by a man, Eldar Mamedov. Mamedov posted the video to Facebook, where it was viewed over 60,000 times and reposted on various other social networks. The faces of both women were fully identifiable and they were subsequently recognised on the streets, and asked questions like, “Have you not been killed yet?” Comments under the video posted by Mamedov included death threats, calls for violence and other hate speech. Fearing for their safety, the two young women were forced to leave Kazakhstan for eight months. On 19 February 2018, the women filed a lawsuit in the Auezov District Court of Almaty claiming that the fact of the distribution of the video without their consent was illegal.

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