Hillary Clinton Demands Trump Condemn Persecution of Gay and Bi Men in Chechnya

 

At an event for The Center, New York’s LGBT community center, Hillary Clinton delivered an impassioned speech calling out the Trump administration for failing to denounce the atrocities in Chechnya, where gay and bisexual men are being rounded up, tortured, and placed in camps. While Clinton ended her remarks inveighing against the horrors in Chechnya, she dedicated a chunk of her speech to rebuking Donald Trump and his administration for rolling back rights for LGBT people across the board since he took office. 

“We may not ever be able to count on this administration to lead on LGBT issues," Clinton said, according to CNN

"When this administration rescinded protections for transgender students, my heart broke," Clinton continued. "When I learned about the proposed cuts in funding for HIV and AIDS research, I thought about all of our efforts to try and achieve an AIDS-free generation."

The former secretary of State, who received The Center’s Trailblazer Award at the event, continued to catalog the injustices the Trump administration has already inflicted on LGBT people. She called out the administration’s decision to leave LGBT people off of the Census and raised her voice while pointing out that Trump nominated Mark Green, “a man who called being transgender a disease” to replace Eric Fanning, the first openly gay secretary of the Army.

"Some of the changes that we're seeing should seem small, but they matter a great deal if you're the person affected," Clinton continued. "Others carry historic significance, like the future of the Supreme Court.” 

Finally, she noted that the United States is not the only country where human rights are in danger of being rolled back. 

“It’s not just here in our country that we’re seeing clouds gathering on the horizon. In recent weeks we’ve heard terrifying accounts from Chechnya of gay and bisexual men being taken from their homes and families, tortured, even killed,” she said. “And when government authorities were confronted with these reports, their response was chilling. They said you can not arrest or repress people who do not exist.” 

While U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley recently condemned the persecution in Chechnya, the only person associated with the administration to do so, Clinton called for the Trump administration to step up and denounce the actions of the Chechen government. “The United States government. Yes, this government should demand an end to the persecution of innocent people across the world,” she said. 

Capping off her speech to rousing applause, Clinton said, “I will say what I said in 2011. Gay rights are human rights, and human rights are gay rights, once and for all!” 

Watch part of Clinton's speech below. 

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