Reports of Iraqi Gays Kidnapped, Tortured and Murdered

Emerging from Iraq: Reports of kidnapping and murder of Gay and Lesbian people;
By Melanie Nathan, Via Press Release, 03/05/2012

The International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, is reporting that today they have received reports from Iraq of a wave of targeted killings of individuals who are perceived to be gay or lesbian.

The notification states that, according to Iraqi human rights activists, in early February 2012, an unidentified group posted death threats against “the adulterous individuals” in the predominantly Shiite neighborhoods of Baghdad and Basra.

The threats gave the individuals, whose names and ages were listed, four days to stop their behavior or else face the wrath of God, and were to be carried out by the Mujahedin.

According to sources inside Iraq,as reported apparently by IGHLRC, as the result of this new surge of anti-gay violence close to 40 people have been kidnapped, brutally tortured and murdered.

The Iraqi authorities have neither responded to this targeted violence nor have they publicly denounced it. It is widely believed that these atrocities are being committed by a group of the Shiite militia.

Statement from Cary Alan Johnson, Executive Director, International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission Today the Government of Iraq represents a fully sovereign and democratic country. As such, it must protect all of its citizens including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people from hate-filled violence and death at the hands of armed militias. Vigilantes who perpetuate the targeted killing of those perceived to be gay or lesbian must not be tolerated in a new Iraq. We have seen these atrocities before.

In 2009 vigilantes murdered hundreds of Iraqi individuals for their perceived sexual orientation. There are no excuses for such heinous human rights violations. We demand that the Iraqi Government put a stop to the wanton persecution and killing of gay people, and that the perpetrators punished.

Statement from Hossein Alizadeh, Middle East and North Africa Program Coordinator, International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission:

“The Iraqi government is responsible for the protection of all Iraqi citizens, including the members of the gay and lesbian community. We call on the Iraqi authorities to immediately intervene to protect the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community and to bring to justice those who are responsible for these atrocities. We particularly demand the Iraqi
Ministry of Human Rights denounce the anti-gay violence in Iraq and launch an official investigation into these heinous crimes.”

See my piece in the Advocate back on Dec 19, 2011 regarding Gay Iraqis displaced by the BUSH war and the danger they faced.

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