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Gay man in Iran executed on 'sodomy' charge, according to reports

It's thought Iman Safari-rad was executed with nine other people.

2022-07-05

Words: Emily Maskell; pictures: Pexels

A gay man in Iran is thought to have been executed because of his sexuality, according to the Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA)

The Agency understands that on 29 June 10 inmates at the Rajai Shahr Prison, were executed with Iman Safari-rad among them.

The Jerusalem Post reports that Iman was executed on a "sodomy" charge.

Safari-rad is known to have been executed alongside Mehdi Khalgoldi, who faced charges of “rape”

Both charges are often used to freely execute LGBTQ people, according to a 2020 US government report.

Human rights and LGBTQ+ campaigner Peter Tatchell told The Jerusalem Post: “Yet again another man has been executed on a charge of sodomy, which he may or may not have committed, with or without consent.

“What is certain is that this man almost certainly did not receive a fair trial under the notoriously biased Iranian judicial system. Defendants are routinely denied access to lawyers and defence witnesses.”

Tatchell says Iran’s judicial system often sees LGBTQ+ people undergo brief and rushed trial hearings with uninformed lawyers where people can be found guilty without corroborating evidence.

He adds that the world must pay attention to these executions in Iran and make relations with the country dependent on Tehran's observance of international human rights law, which includes a prohibition on the use of the death penalty in all circumstances and respects.

Iran operates under strict Sharia law, which forbids any type of sexual activity outside of heterosexual marriage. Same-sex sexual activity is punishable by imprisonment, corporal punishment, fines, and in some cases death.

According to the Human Dignity Trust, Article 234 of Iran's penal code provides that anal intercourse between men is punishable with the death penalty.