ECOM annually conducts an analysis of violations of LGBT people's rights in the countries of Eastern Europe and Central Asia. Based on this analysis, we draw up a report with conclusions and recommendations to improve the situation in the countries.
The report on violations of the rights of gays, other MSM and transgender people in Kazakhstan in 2022 is based on documented cases of rights violations provided by partners, as well as on the analysis of the legal environment.
In 2022, ECOM monitors registered 31 cases of violations of LGBT people's rights in Kazakhstan. Most of the victims were gays, bisexuals and other MSM, in seven cases the victims were trans women.
Among the most common violations there are cases related to discrimination by law enforcement agencies – law enforcement officers practice blackmail and extortion through the so-called "fake dates"; cases of discrimination by medical professionals, most of which are related to doctors disclosing patients' personal data.
In 2022, ECOM registered more cases of extreme violence against queer people in Kazakhstan compared to previous years, including a case of conversion therapy and the use of cold weapons.
The following main barriers were identified in the legal environment:
- lack of legislation prohibiting discrimination on the grounds of SOGI, as well as regulating the rights of people living with HIV;
- among the protected grounds in the legislation there is no sexual orientation and gender identity, and no health status (HIV status);
- HIV is on the list of diseases which prevent a person from adopting a child or establishing guardianship;
- the procedure for legal transition is outdated and requires mandatory surgical intervention and examination in a psychiatric hospital.
The Republic of Kazakhstan is recommended to take decisive steps to eliminate all forms of discrimination and violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity, in particular:
- adopt an anti-discrimination law that would directly prohibit all forms of infringement, including on the grounds of SOGI, and create an effective mechanism for investigating cases of discrimination and prosecuting violators;
- amend the Criminal Code, adding a new paragraph to the list of aggravating circumstances: “commission of a hate crime in connection with the HIV status of the victim or his sexual orientation and gender identity”;
- amend the Criminal Code by expanding the list of protected grounds an including health status (HIV status) and sexual orientation and gender identity;
- bring into line Article 79 of the Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan “On public health and healthcare system” and the List of diseases which prevent a person from adopting a child and establishing different types of guardianship, thereby allowing adoption for PLHIV;
- bring the legal transition procedure in line with international standards, including by abolishing the requirements for mandatory examination in a psychiatric hospital for 30 calendar days and mandatory surgical intervention;
- train police, prosecutors and judges to effectively investigate and deal with statements regarding hate crimes on the grounds of homophobia and transphobia.
The publication was prepared by ECOM and published as part of the Regional project «Sustainability of services for key populations in the region of Eastern Europe and Central Asia» (SoS_project 2.0), implemented by a consortium of organizations led by the Alliance fir Public Health in partnership with the CO «100% Life», with financial support from the Global Fund.
The views expressed in this publication are those of the authors and may not reflect the views of the consortium organizations as well as the Global Fund.
The Global Fund was not involved in agreeing and approving either the material itself or the possible conclusions from it.