In mid-October, the mother of Nura, a transgender woman from a conservative village outside Baku, got an unexpected call from the precinct police office. “Your son is homosexual,” the officer said. “Are you going to renounce your son?”
The mother, who asked not to be named, said she refused. “Why should I do that,” she told the officer. Shortly after, Nura's brother was called in to the police station and made to sign a statement confirming that the family did not renounce Nura.
“This is pressure on my family. I really don’t understand what the police want from me,” Nura told Eurasianet.org. She is now in Turkey, where she fled after a large-scale crackdown on LGBT Azerbaijanis in September.
She was one of about 100 people arrested in a two-week series of raids in Baku. She said she was interrogated, beaten and tortured at the Organized Crime Unit, a branch of the Interior Ministry tasked with combatting terrorism, human trafficking, kidnapping, extortion, and other organized criminal activity.
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