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Forgotten Revolutionaries

A Eurasianet partner post from Coda

Ukraine’s LGBT community depends on the West to defend their rights.
 
Last July, Zo­ryan Kis was sit­ting on a bench in the cen­ter of Kiev with his boyfriend on his lap when a group of right wing teenagers came up to them. They asked the cou­ple if they were pa­tri­ots, and then emp­tied a can of pep­per spray in to Zo­ryan’s face. Friends chased away the at­tack­ers, and Zo­ryan rushed to a phar­macy. Hav­ing had tear gas fired at him dur­ing Ukraine’s Maidan protests, he knew ex­actly how to rinse out his eyes.
 
The pub­lic dis­play of pub­lic af­fec­tion by Zo­ryan and his
 
boyfriend Timur was not en­tirely spon­ta­neous. In Rus­sia, two male ac­tors had de­cided to see what would hap­pen if they walked around Moscow hold­ing hands, doc­u­ment­ing the abuse they re­ceived and up­load­ing it to YouTube. Zo­ryan de­cided to do the same thing in Kiev – he wanted to see how much Ukraine had changed since the Maidan rev­o­lu­tion and how dif­fer­ent it was from Rus­sia. The ex­per­i­ment had gone well un­til the very end.
 

To read the full story

Ian Bateson is a freelance journalist based in Ukraine.

A Eurasianet partner post from Coda

Forgotten Revolutionaries

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