Ukraine: The 'new Ukraine' is failing us, LGBT activists say

With the subsequent ousting of pro-Russian president Viktor Yanukovych – who was known to court president Vladimir Putin’s favour by emulating his infamous “anti-gay laws” – the LGBT community was optimistic that attitudes would change.

However, two years on many have since found that persecution and prejudice continues, and that the free­doms called for by the protesters in Kiev’s independence square have been un­evenly ap­plied in post-rev­o­lu­tion Ukraine – particularly when it comes to sexuality.

In the west­ern city of Lviv lo­cal au­thor­i­ties announced earlier this month they could not pro­tect a fes­ti­val or­ga­nised by an LGBT or­gan­i­sa­tion, allowing the ho­tel where the event was about to take place to become sur­rounded by far-right ac­tivists in masks shout­ing “kill, kill, kill”. The or­ga­nis­ers were forced to cancel the event and leave the city over fears for their safety.

“The sit­u­a­tion can lean ei­ther way,” says Kis, explaining that with the Maidan protests now playing a key part in the narrative of the “new Ukraine” the LGBT community – despite being on the frontlines of the unrest – has struggled to find its place.  Read more via the Guardian