Amid news that gay men are being rounded up and tortured in concentration camps in the Chechyna region of Russia, President Vladimir Putin's spokesman is denying the reports.
"We do not have any reliable information about any problems in this area," Dmitry Peskow said on Friday, according to ABC News.
Chechen authorites have also rejected the reports, saying that gay people do not exist in the region. The Guardian reported that Russian officials are unlikely to change their stance because Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov "pledges allegiance to Vladimir Putin and a love for Russia, and in return the Kremlin turns a blind eye to human rights abuses."
GLAAD has called on Nikki Haley, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, to speak out and investigate the claims. The Human Rights Campaign has also called on Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to address the camps while meeting with Russian President Putin this week. The State Department issued a statement condeming the arrests of gay men in Chechyna a week prior.
Survivors from the camps say they were victims of electric shocks and beatings with wooden sticks and metal rods. At least 100 men have been placed in the camps, according to reports. Three men are believed to have been killed, reports The Guardian.