Activists want police to investigate homophobic hate group for involvement in recent murder of LGBTQ rights champion in St. Petersburg
The St. Petersburg LGBTQ rights organization “Vykhod” (Exit) has formally asked local police officials to investigate the “Saw Against LGBT” movement for involvement in the murder of LGBTQ rights activist Yelena Grigoryeva, whose body was discovered on July 22.
On its website earlier this summer, the anti-LGBTQ movement published a list of activists against whom it claimed to be preparing “very dangerous and brutal gifts.” Grigoryeva’s name appeared on the list, which she noted in a Facebook post on July 3. Vykhod activists want local police to try to identify the authors of this threatening list and investigate them for extremism.
Before she was murdered, Yelena Grigoryeva reportedly notified the police that she’d received death threats, though spokespeople for the Interior Ministry told journalists that “not one of her appeals concerned death threats.”
Sources in St. Petersburg’s police force told Meduza that investigators suspect no political motive in Grigoryeva’s killing, though her friends strongly believe she was targeted because of her activism.
Since last year, the “Saw Against LGBT” movement has encouraged Russians to assault LGBTQ rights activists, offering honoraria for attacks, according to lgbtnet.org. The movement’s participants threatened gay people in Bashkiria in April 2018, and LGBTQ rights activists in Yekaterinburg in July 2019. On July 17, 2019, the movement’s official website was once again blocked.