Turkey: Chained to radiator for 9 months because they were gay

It is day two of my stay in Diyarbakir. I met a group of LGBT rights defenders today, each of them could tell countless horrible stories from their work. They work in an environment of extreme homophobia. In July this year, a young man was killed in Diyarbakir by his own father, who had discovered his son's sexuality and considered it an intolerable offence to the honour of the family. Also this year, in a town nearby, another gay man was killed by his own brother.

There is no hope for justice in these and other similar cases: a police officer said to the killer that what he had done was ok. Most horrifying is the story of one of the activists I met, who I'll call F. F spent eight months handcuffed to a radiator, prisoner of their own family. F escaped but lives fearing to bump by accident into a relative: that would be the last day of their life. Despite the unbelievably difficult environment, they find the courage and strength to engage in human rights activism, which brings about even more risks. Meeting them was humbling and inspiring.

Andrea Rocca, Head of Protection.