Organization Documents a Rise in Domestic Abuse of Gays

Sarajevo Open Center, an organization of gay and women rights advocates, said it documented a rise in homophobic domestic abuse cases in Bosnia. From January to September this year, the organization documented seven cases, according to a member.

“The cases varied from threats and blackmail to freedom deprivation and limited movement, violence and physical injury, and forced treatment (against homosexuality). In all (documented) cases, the perpetrators were parents or siblings, with support from extended family members”, said Vladana Vasić.

According to the organization, the victims were minors and adults who live with parents. In some cases, family members would trick their gay relatives into a space where they would lock them up and force them to undergo “cure” treatments against homosexuality. If the victim reported violence to the police, the law enforcement would respond, but only after repeated calls.

“(The police) would say things like ‘(gays) have the right to choose how to live their life, but they can be cured if they wanted’, or they would talk (the victim) out of reporting their family members. Also, there are religious officials or psychologists and psychotherapists who claim that they ‘cure’ homosexuality, so the families of LGBTI persons ask them for advice and help”, said Vasić.

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