LGBT in Iran
The Chairman for the organisation "Exmuslimer i Sverige" (Ex-muslims in Sweden), Afsaneh Vahdat, talked in front of an engaged audience about not only the situation for LGBT-people in Iran, but also about the situation in Sweden today.
- As a Persian, people assume that you are muslim, but you should remember that most people from the Middle East here in Sweden are refugees from the oppression of the regime. There are many Atheists and Christians. Islam has had the power in Iran for 30 years, and now Iran has started to execute masses due to the growing critisism against the regime, Vahdat says.
LGBT-people is one of the groups that have it the most difficult in Iran. Primarily homosexuals and bisexuals. A kiss between two people of the same gender is punished by getting whipped 60 times. A sexual relation with someone of the same sex is punished by 100 whips and if this is repeated more than three times the guilty one(s) will be executed the fourth time, according to the 122nd paragraph in the Islamic book of law.
It is more acceptable to "change gender" to be able to live with the person that you want than to risk living in a relationship with someone of the same gender, and it is more acceptable to be executed for being a homosexual than for being politically active.
- The Koran is filled with phrases that can be interpreted in many ways. Our organisation believes that money gathered from taxes should not go towards educating imams in Sweden, because this happens, says Afsaneh. The freedom of speech needs to be defended everywhere, religions should be criticised. Human rights are universal. This should not be allowed in Iran, Algeria or here in Sweden.
Since the revolution 1979, over 4000 homosexuals are claimed to have been executed in Iran but it is estimated that the actual figure is much higher.