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LGBTQ+ persons in Afghanistan

Updated: Sep 15, 2022

As the Taliban takes control of Afghanistan, people fear for their lives. One of the most vulnerable sets of people are the ones belonging to the LGBTQ+ community. It is indeed true that the community did not enjoy a normal life even before this. Let alone being a homosexual, discussing the topic of sex has been taboo in Afghanistan. This is one reason why there could possibly be no statistics on the size of the community in the country.

Pointing to the hard interpretation of the #Sharia law by the Taliban the community along with its allies worry that violence against them could make their survival harder than it already is. Realizing those fears were the words of a Taliban judge. Last month, speaking to the German tabloid Bild he openly said, “for homosexuals, there can only be two punishments: either stoning, or he must stand behind a wall that will fall down on him. The wall must be 2.5 to 3 metres high”. Nemat Sadat, one of the first openly gay Afghan-Americans tweeted “Lost in the conversation on #Afghanistan is the plight of #LGBTQ+ Afghans who fear for their lives now more than ever before”.

Today as Afghans continue to flee their country for safety, it is unclear what the future holds for them. It is especially uncertain for vulnerable populations such as the LGBTQ+ Afghans. How welcoming will countries be to them or if they would be discriminated against in the country of refuge are some daunting concerns. As Canada pledges to resettle Afghans, explicitly including LGBTQ+ people, it is a hope that other countries will follow suit.

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