A Russian man has come forward about his experience in a gay concentration camp in Chechnya.

Maxim Lapunov said he and his partner were detained in the capital of Grozny while he was there for work, according to The Advocate.

He is the first survivor to come forward without the cover of anonymity.

Chechen authorities have reportedly been rounding up gay and bi men into concentration camps since early this year, in a crackdown that has been called genocide.

Lapunov told a news conference in Moscow that he was kept in a detention facility for about a fortnight.

He and his partner were allegedly beaten and forced to fight each other.

“Day after day, they were telling me how precisely they want to kill me,” said Lapunov.

He said he was released only after signing a statement declaring he was gay and swearing not to speak of his experiences.

Authorities reportedly said he would be hunted down and killed if he spoke about his detention.

“I keep having nightmares about what I went through there,” said Lapunov.

“Those cries, moans and prays for mercy have left an imprint.”

“I want justice, I hope it will come. I don’t want to feel unprotected in my own country, so that anyone from Chechnya could come after me and kill me at any moment.”

Chechen officials have continued to deny that the gay concentration camps exist.

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