In Georgia, LGBTQ community fears Russia-style crackdown in ‘existential fight’

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06/08/2024

In Georgia’s oldest gay bar, Tato Londaridze carefully stepped around construction materials as he set out his ambitious plan to put a stage for drag queens on the dance floor. “Success”, in the centre of the Georgian capital Tbilisi, was the first gay club in the Caucasus when it opened in 2000 – but a slew of anti-LGBTQ proposals from the government have now put its future at risk.
“We are an open gay bar,” Tato said. “And we don’t want to change that.” On Tuesday, the ruling Georgian Dream party outlined a package of laws that would ban what it calls “LGBT propaganda”, mirroring similar legislation used to crack down on gay rights in Russia and, more recently, Hungary.

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