Sunday, February 21, 2016

Can gay bloggers safety travel in Russia or in the Middle East? Question came up at a DC Travel Expo today

As I explained earlier this evening on my “International Issues” blog, a travel consultant at the DC Expo today did address the question of openly gay travel in authoritarian countries, at my question from the floor.

It’s well known that in Russia now, public advocacy of homosexuality could get a tourist arrested.  And that seems to be true in some relatively moderate Arab countries (like UAE/Dubai, Qatar, etc), and of course in a number of openly hostile countries in Africa.

But it might be dangerous even for someone who has a lot of material in his or her name on the web or in social media. This consultant seemed to think so.

In January 2015 Priscilla Wilson of “Out Traveler” listed ten places LGBT people should never visit, here.
Russia was on the list, although some other sites still describe a quiet underground gay life in Russia, even after the closing of Moscow’s largest disco because of vandalism and other constant threats.  
I do wonder about countries that have some opulence (like Dubai in UAE) where homosexual behavior is illegal and prosecuted but where it seems discreet travels are probably left alone. Comments?

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