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A gay couple in Azerbaijan have received death threats and been forced to go underground after getting engaged in a small ceremony.
Javid Nabiyev and his partner exchanged vows in presence of a handful of friends earlier this week in Sumqayit on the Caspian sea, a year after they first met.
But when several news networks in Azerbaijan picked up their private pictures on Facebook, they were inundated with hate mail from people who said they deserved to die.
“We received homophobic verbal attacks,” said Nabiyev, who is the head of the Azerbaijani gay rights advocacy group, Nafas Azerbaijan LGBT alliance.
“Some people said ‘You should die, I’ll kick you in the street, I’ll kill you’,” he told the Guardian on phone from Baku.
The 25-year-old said he had had to leave home because people had gathered outside and shouted homophobic abuse.
“We were engaged; not in a big ceremony. It took place between our friends at my home and only eight people were invited,” he said.
“At midnight yesterday, I had to change the place I was living in. People in my apartment building had heard about the news and I heard people gathering outside my house and ridiculing us,” he said. “It was very terrible. But I’m now in a safe place in a friend’s house.”
Homosexuality is legal in Azerbaijan, but Nabiyev said discrimination against the gay and lesbian community and homophobia was rife.
Source: The Guardian
To read more, click www.theguardian.com/world/2014/sep/26/gay-azerbaijan-engagement-threats
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