TV & Radio
Iranian gay activists call for action
Tuesday 20 September, 2005 13:49
Gay activists within Iran are calling for more support from the international community, warning that the country is condoning the persecution and abuse of lesbians and gay men.
In a press release issued to GAY.COM, the Persian Gays & Lesbians Organisation (PGLO) said they are seeing examples of gay men being targeted by authorities because of their sexuality.
The call for help comes just a month after activists accused the Iranian government of executing two teenagers for having sex with each other.
In a case that sparked international protests, the boys were pictured being carried to the gallows and hung for their actions.
In a response to the outcry, Iran said the executions were also because the boys had raped a younger boy; claims that have been denied by campaigners within the country.
They warned that false charges were often drawn up in a bid to deflect international condemnation.
PGLO says its more recent case has seen a 22 year old man repeatedly flogged because of his sexuality.
Amir, has, it claims, been arrested and put in custody by police, fundamentalist militia and the revolutionary guard.
Additionally, the group says the police are using internet chat rooms to entrap gay men and arrest them.
Amir was sentenced to 100 lashes for being gay, they say, and has now escaped the country to an undisclosed location.
“Iranian homosexuals are usually subjected to extreme oppression and sometimes they are killed,” the PLGO said in its release.
“Only small fraction of this violent homophobia comes to light. The largest part is hidden behind a curtain of fear. Many persecutions get mixed up with false accusations of crimes like rape, so that the real reasons are disguised.”
“The Persian Gays and Lesbians Organisation asks all human rights activists and GLBT defenders to protest against homophobic attitudes and crimes in Iran. Let’s work together to prevent such oppression and injustice.”
UK-based Outrage, which helped organise the international protests last month, said British activists should challenge the situation in Iran.
It says too many people in the UK are failing to respond to the reports of homophobia.
"We deplore the gullibility of many gay, left and human rights groups concerning the abuse of LGBT human rights in Iran,” Brett Lock said today.
"Too many are willing to believe the smears and slurs of the Iranian government and state-approved newspapers like Qods.”
"Where are the left-wing campaigns in western countries to support the freedom struggles of Iranian LGBTs, women, democrats, socialists and workers?”