During a press conference, Mikayel Danielyan, chairman of the human rights defense organization “Helsinki Association” stated that he is starting a new initiative called “Heterosexual Alliance in Defense of LGBT Community Members,” which plans to deal with defending the rights of LGBT community members.
He noted, that he does not plan to register the alliance with the Ministry of Justice and that the alliance has no complex procedure or responsibilities for those who want to join.
“I’m announcing that I’m opening it, whoever wishes, can join,” said Danielyan. He stated that the Heterosexual Alliance will be involved in activities, such as organizing protests in front of court rooms for cases against members of sexual minorities on the grounds of prejudice. The alliance will also publish responses to articles with LGBT-directed hate speech.
Armenia is a signatory of the UN declaration on sexual orientation and gender identity since 2008, however, currently; there is no legislation that safeguards the rights of the LGBT community. In 2013, there was major discussion and particularly criticism regarding a law on overall gender equality by conservative sectors of Armenian society. The hateful backlash led to the omission of the word ‘gender’ to ‘men and women’ and was considered a blow to Women’s and LGBT rights activists.