BERLIN – The Islamic Republic's campaign to execute gay Iranians is believed to
have resulted in the public hanging this month of a man identified only as “CH.
According to an online report last week in Europe’s largest gay news
service, Pink News, Iran’s judiciary imposed the death penalty on Ch. M. in
Marvdasht, Fars province, on April 19 “for allegedly engaging in ‘sodomy’ with
Iran has ramped up over the years its persecution of the
country’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community.
Guardian earlier this month translated remarks from Grand Ayatollah Abdollah
Javadi-Amoli, who said, “Even animals... dogs and pigs don’t engage in this
disgusting act [homosexuality], but yet they [Western politicians] pass laws in
favor of them in their parliaments.”
Stuart Appelbaum, a leading US gay
activist and head of a large trade union, wrote to The Jerusalem Post by email
on Saturday: “The fact that Iran promotes and tolerates this kind of action
removes itself from the community of civilized nations. The entire world – gay
and straight – should be appalled.”
Appelbaum added, “If members of the
LGBT community speak out about the Middle East and yet remain silent about the
horrific acts and statements coming out of Iran, they are culpable as
Appelbaum is president of the Retail, Wholesale and Department
Store Union, UFCW, and president of the Jewish Labor Committee.
reported that Gholamhossein Chamansara, the attorney-general of Marvdasht, told
the government-controlled Iranian Fars News Agency that a man (Ch. M.)
was sentenced to death because of his “despicable/heinous act that contradicted
Shari’a Muslim laws.”
Yoav Sivan, an Israeli journalist who served on the
boards of Aguda – the Israeli Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Association
and the Jerusalem Open House and the Israeli board of the World Jewish Congress,
wrote to the Post on Saturday: “Unfortunately, we have become inured to hearing
such homophobic expressions coming from top Iranians. We should note that the
expression is not just homophobic but just as much anti-Western by describing
tolerance toward a minority as a shortcoming of Western politics. So Ayatollah
Abdollah Javadi-Amoli teaches two lessons. One homophobic directed primarily at
his audience at home, and one anti- Western that should be heard primarily among
us in the West.”
Gay sex is punishable by death under Iranian ”so long as
both the active and passive partners are mature, of sound mind, and have acted
of free will.”
According to Pink News, “the Iranian Human Rights
Activists News Agency (HRAN) stated that the reference to ‘despicable/ heinous
act’ indicates that the death penalty was carried due to same-sex acts. However
the judiciary regulatory office in Fars Province was unwilling to give more
precise information about the case and the type of sexual activities of the
In an interview last week with the Die Welt am Sonntag,
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu commented on Iran’s human rights
“After all they stone women, they hang gays – this is a backward,
dark medieval regime that imposes its tyranny on its own people. Shoots them on
the sidewalk, goes into their homes, culls the Internet, takes people away at
night,” he said.
Human rights activists, gay journalists, and LGBT
publications criticized Human Rights Watch for failing to focus on the rise of
persecution of gays in the Islamic Republic.
The online publication
Queerty wrote an article titled, “Disgraced Human Rights Watch Director Scott
Long Quits...” back in the summer of 2010. Long had failed to publish a study
documenting intense repression of Iran's LGBT community.
Writing on his
blog “A Paper Bird” in February, Long, whom critics also accuse of fanning
anti-Israel sentiments, continued to downplay violent repression of Iran’s
LGBTs, saying that Iran has “a unique genocide, the first genocide in world
history with no demonstrable dead.”
After Long’s departure, HRW issued a
respected study in 2010 on the persecution faced by Iran’s LGBT
Long has praised anti-Israel advocates such as Sarah Schulman,
who claimed that Israel is mounting a “pinkwashing” campaign to promotes its gay
rights record to blunt criticism of the Jewish state.
Iranian Minorities Human Right Organisation
IMHRO started in January 2008. We are a NGO based in the UK and are independent from governments and political parties. We campaign for the Human Rights of Ethnic, Religious, Gender and Sexual Minorities in Iran.
For any enquiry and adding your name to our E-mail list, please contact us:
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John Peters Humphrey: The father of the modern human rights system
Peace can only last where human rights are respected, where the people are fed, and where individuals and nations are free
Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere
Give peace a chance.
As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others
Silence in the face of injustice is complicity with the oppressor. Ginetta Sagan
An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind
We must reject the false comfort that other’s suffering is not our problem
Only when the last prisoner of conscience has been freed, when the last torture chamber has been closed, when the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights is a reality for the world's people, will our work be done