Archive for November, 2009

Photo: Across Africa, gays and lesbians are fighting prejudice and demanding equality (Reuters: Antony Njuguna) Source

A Commonwealth of homophobes

Despite the Commonwealth’s commitment to human rights, its member states include prominent anti-gay tyrannies
By Peter Tatchell, human rights campaigner

The Guardian – Comment is Free – London – 26 November 2009

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2009/nov/26/commonwealth-homophobes

The Commonwealth is tainted. More than a few of the leaders who will dine with the Queen this weekend at the Commonwealth nations summit in Trinidad and Tobago have blood on their hands. They abuse the human rights of their own citizens. Some retain the death penalty and condone torture and detention without trial. Others muzzle the opposition, media and civic organisations. A number are mired in corruption; having amassed huge personal wealth while most of their people live in dire poverty.

In too many countries, the key principles of the Commonwealth – human rights, equality, non-discrimination, opportunity for all, liberty of the individual and personal dignity – are routinely violated.

And what does the Commonwealth do? Mostly nothing. No expulsions, no sanctions. Not even a condemnation.

Typical is the Commonwealth’s indifference to the widespread homophobic persecution that exists in most member states. Many lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Commonwealth citizens are at risk of arrest, torture, rape, imprisonment and extra-judicial murder.

The Commonwealth secretary general, Kamalesh Sharma, has failed to speak out. In particular, he has ignored requests to condemn Uganda’s new anti-homosexuality bill, which proposes the death penalty for “aggravated homosexuality” and “serial offenders”.

This is par for the course. For two decades, successive Commonwealth leaders have shown a systematic, persistent failure to challenge homophobic discrimination and violence – no matter how extreme.

The Gambian president, Yahya Jammeh, last year promised “stricter laws than Iran” and began his witch-hunt by ordering LGBT people to leave the country and threatening to “cut off the head” of any gay person who remains. The Commonwealth leadership did not rebuke him for his murderous threats.

Around 80 countries worldwide continue to outlaw homosexuality, with penalties ranging from one year’s jail to life imprisonment – and even execution. More than half of these countries are former British colonies. A majority are members of the Commonwealth, headed by the Queen.

Of the 53 Commonwealth member states, more than 40 still criminalise same-sex relations, mostly under anti-gay laws that were originally imposed by the British government in the 19th century, during the period of colonial rule.

These homophobic imperial laws, which were forced on the colonies and then retained after independence, are wrecking the lives of LGBT people throughout the Commonwealth. They criminalise otherwise law-abiding citizens and contribute to a hostile social atmosphere that demonises LGBT people as unnatural, abnormal, marginal and criminal.

This renders LGBTs liable to blackmail, imprisonment, mob violence, rejection by their families, excommunication from their faith, eviction from their homes, dismissal from their jobs; making many of them high risk for depression, mental illness and suicide. Such bigotry and ill-treatment is a stain on the Commonwealth.

According this year’s global survey by the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association, some Commonwealth nations rank among the most homophobic on Earth. Same-sex relations carry maximum penalties of life imprisonment in Uganda, Bangladesh, Guyana and Sierra Leone. It is 20 years plus flogging in Malaysia, and 14 years in Nigeria, Kenya, Malawi and Papua New Guinea. Twelve states in Nigeria have sharia law and the death penalty.

Earlier this month, I wrote an open letter to the Commonwealth secretary general, pointing out that he is “entrusted to defend and promote the Commonwealth’s humanitarian values” but was neglecting to so, on LGBT human rights and on a range of other humanitarian issues:

It is extremely disappointing that the Commonwealth leadership appears to not regard LGBT rights as human rights and that it has neglected to protect LGBT citizens in the Commonwealth family of nations. This inaction is de facto collusion with victimisation.

The most homophobic Commonwealth country is Uganda. The anti-homosexuality bill, currently under consideration by the Ugandan parliament, proposes the death penalty for certain homosexual acts and life imprisonment for all other same-sex behaviour, including the mere touching of another person with the intent to have gay sex. Life imprisonment is also the penalty for contracting a same-sex mariage. Membership of LGBT organisations and funding for them, advocacy of LGBT human rights and the provision of condoms or safer sex advice to LGBT people will result in a minimum sentence of five years and a maximum of seven years for “promoting” homosexuality.

A person in authority who fails to report violators to the police within 24 hours will incur three years behind bars. Astonishingly, the new legislation has an extra-territorial jusridiction. It will also apply to Ugandans who commit these ‘crimes’ while living abroad, in countries where such behaviour is not a criminal offence. Violators overseas will be subjected to extradition, trial and punishment in Uganda.

See this appeal against the bill by Human Rights Watch and other human rights defenders, and this call to action by the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission:

The Ugandan bill violates the equality and non-discrimination provisions of the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), to which Uganda is a signatory. These breaches of international humanitarian commitments undermine the right to privacy and individual liberty and thereby set a dangerous legal precedent which threatens the human rights of all Ugandans. They are part of a wider drift towards an authoritarian state. President Museveni is fast turning into another Robert Mugabe.

The anti-homosexuality bill has been condemned by Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, International Commission of Jurists and the World Aids Campaign. You can lobby the Commonwealth secretary-general here. Homophobic and transphobic persecution in Uganda and other Commonwealth states breaches international human rights law. It is time the Commonwealth took a stand against it. Over to you, Kamalesh Sharma.
www.petertatchell.net

You can follow Peter on Twitter at http://twitter.com/PeterTatchell or join the Peter Tatchell Human Rights Campaign Facebook group at http://tinyurl.com/cj9y6s.

Iran: Stop Executions for Sodomy Charges

Join the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC), Iranian Queers Organization (IRQO) and COC Netherlands in calling on Iranian authorities to stop the numerous executions of minors and adults accused of sodomy. Also join us in calling on Western countries with significant diplomatic and economic ties to Iran, including Germany, France, Canada, as well as the European Union, to pursue diplomatic efforts to cease these executions.

Use our electronic system below to send a letter in English to the foreign officials and another letter in Persian to Iranian officials.

Take Action Now

The Issue

The courts in Iran have sentenced a number of men to death after they were accused and convicted of sodomy. Under Iranian law, sodomy includes sexual intercourse between members of the same sex, and is illegal. The punishment for same-sex intercourse between two men (Lavaat) is death and between two women (Mosaheghe) is 100 lashes for the first three offenses and the death penalty for the fourth.

Most, if not all of these arbitrary executions orders follow rushed trials with little adherence to procedure. Judges overseeing sodomy cases often ignore the strict guidelines of the Iranian Penal Code, and instead use questionable investigative methods and inadmissible evidence to decide the case. Frequently, the convictions are based on forced confessions, made under extreme psychological pressure and torture. Additionally, at least three lawyers who have defended people accused of sodomy have expressed fear of harassment and intimidation by the government and vigilantes. The courts do not allow independent observers to examine cases. Such practices violate the defendants’ human rights to a fair trial, free from torture.

In most cases, the Court convicts the defendants of sodomy charges solely on the basis of “the knowledge of the judge”. According to Iranian law, when there is not enough evidence to convict a defendant of a sexual crime, the judge may use his knowledge, in a deductive process based on the evidence that already exists, to determine whether the crime took place or not. Unfortunately, the excessive use of this principle means that rather than paying attention to evidence, the judge often sentences defendants to death based on his speculations. A number of prominent legal and religious scholars believe that such a broad application of the “the knowledge of the judge” to issue death penalty for sexual crimes is in violation of the letter and the spirit of Sharia law.

Regardless of the procedural errors of the trials, Iran’s practice of punishing sexual crimes such as sodomy with the death penalty is cruel, disproportionate to the nature of the crime, and inherently arbitrary under international law. The United Nations Human Rights Committee has stated that under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), to which Iran is a party, applying the death penalty for ‘homosexual acts’ violates Article 6, and that criminalization of private sexual relations between consenting adults is contrary to Articles 17 and 26. Additionally, the Special Rapporteur on Extra-Judicial, Summary, and Arbitrary Executions has expressed concern numerous times about the use of the death penalty for consensual sodomy and has stated that criminalizing sodomy “increases the social stigmatization of members of sexual minorities, which in turn makes them more vulnerable to violence and human rights abuses, including violations of the right to life.”

Alarmingly, some of the defendants sentenced to death were tried for sexual acts they were accused of committing as minors. Article 111 of Iran’s Islamic Penal Code states that, “Sodomy is only punishable by death if both parties are adults and of sound mind” and Article 6(5) of the ICCPR states that “[A] sentence of death shall not be imposed for crimes committed by persons below eighteen years of age.” Thus, neither Iranian law nor international law permits the execution of these young men.
Background

The following sodomy cases have been brought in the Iranian judicial system within the past three years. We are still investigating other possible cases in which men have been charged with sodomy, convicted, and sentenced to death.

1. Ghaseem Bashkool, son of AzizAllah and born in 1984, was arrested along with another young man on May 31, 2007 on charges of sodomy. Both men were convicted despite an absence of credible evidence, and sentenced to death. At the time of the arrest, Qhassem was a third-year student of applied mathematics, but following his arrest, he was expelled from the university. The negative publicity around his case also took a toll on his family, causing them great social and economic hardship.

The First District of the Criminal Court of the Ardabil province found both men guilty of sodomy and sentenced them to death. In February 2009, an open letter surfaced on the Internet in which he pleaded for his life. In his letter, Ghassem insisted that the sodomy allegation was baseless and that in the absence of any credible evidence, the judge had referred to the “knowledge of the judge” as the basis of his ruling. At the time of the writing of the letter, Ghassem had spent 20 months in Ardebil prison.

Despite repeated efforts by a number of lawyers and human rights defenders inside Iran to investigate the situation, it currently remains unclear.

2. In February 2009, an informed source at the Fars Province Bar Association confirmed that the Fourth District of the Criminal Court in the Fars Province had convicted a man of sodomy and, in accordance with Article 110 of the Islamic Penal Code, had sentenced him to the death penalty, which would be administered by throwing him off a cliff.

Following the gruesome ruling of the Court, the accuser decided to withdraw his complaint and asked the Court to close the case. Instead, the Court ruled that the public aspect of the case (in the Court’s language, “the violation of the divine law”), forces the Court to prosecute the defendant regardless of the accuser’s demand. However, in the absence of the private complaint, the Court ordered a retrial and that the earlier ruling to be nullified.

We are still in the process of gathering information regarding the current status of the ruling and the defendant.

3. On Aug 9, 2008, the Iranian reformist newspaper Kargozaran, which was later shut down by the government, reported on the conviction of 4 young men in Tabriz (North-Western Iran) for sodomy. According to the report, Mahdi Pooran (17-years-old), Hamid Taghi, Ebrahim Hamidi, and Mehdi Rezaii were found guilty of sodomy by the Second District Criminal Court of Tabriz in July 2008, and were sentenced to death. The case was based on a complaint by a 19-year old man with a history of family feuds with the defendants, Hojat, who accused the defendants of physical and sexual assault. Although Hojat consistently told the court that he had no witness for his alleged rape, in the last session of the court he introduced 3 of his male relatives as witnesses to the rape. Given the absence of 4 male witnesses, the Court’s ruling was based on the “knowledge of the judge.”

The prominent Iranian human rights lawyer, Mohammad Mostafaii, who represented the four defendants, believes his clients were framed. In a post to his blog, he says that following a fist fight between his clients and a group of four young men who trespassed and were damaging a piece of land owned by Ebrahim’s father, the police intervened and arrested his clients, accusing them of gang-rape. Since his clients declared their innocence, the police officials started beating and torturing them for 3 days, hoping that at least one of them would confess to the sexual act. After 3 days, the police referred the case to the court as a sodomy rape case.

After the initial hearing, the court ordered the release of the men on $10,000 bail, but it took the defendants 28 days to provide the bail and get out of jail. Fifty-five days later, during the trial, the Deputy District Attorney requested the death penalty for the defendants. The court sentenced all defendants to death penalty, which will be carried out after approval by the Iranian Supreme Court at an unspecified time.

4. In February 2008, reports surfaced of the arrest of two young men, Hamze Chavoshi (19 years old) and Loghman Hamzepour (18 years old), in the Kurdish city of Sardasht in Western Iran. Both men were accused of sodomy. Their current status is under investigation.

5. Sources have informed us that a Court in Shiraz found Mohsen Ghabraii guilty of sodomy and sentenced him to death. Despite his lawyer’s appeal, his death sentence was upheld by the Supreme Court and it will be carried out soon. Mohsen, who at the time of the alleged crime was a minor, has pleaded not guilty and has insisted on his innocence ever since.

6. Nemat Safavi, now 19 years old, was arrested in June 2006 at age 16 for alleged sodomy. According to reports in 2008, the Criminal Court in Ardebil sentenced him to death. Nemat was first sent to a juvenile detention center and was later admitted to the young adult prison facility in Ardebil, waiting for his death sentence to be reviewed by the Supreme Court.

According to an investigation performed by the Committee of Human Rights Reporters (CHRR) in November 2009, the Supreme Court overturned Nemat’s death sentence on March 4, 2009 and sent the case to another criminal court in Ardebil for retrial. Efforts are currently underway to provide Nemat with a defense lawyer who can convince the court of his innocence and prevent another death sentence for him.

Send a message
Take Action Now

Contact Information

Please use the Persian text below, based on the English sample letter, and write to Iranian officials to ask them to use their authority to stop the pending executions on sodomy charges and to put an end to criminalizing same-sex intercourse. We also request that you use the English sample letter to write the Western governments with diplomatic and economic ties to Iran, urging them to pressure Iran to end the killing of its citizens for sodomy convictions.

Please send the letter below in Persian to:

Supreme Leader of Iran, Ayatollah Khamenei
info@leader.ir
istiftaa@leader.ir
Chief Justice of Iran, Ayatollah Sadeq Amoli Larijani
Larijani@Dadgostary-tehran.ir
Foreign Minister of Iran, Mr. Manouchehr Mottaki
matbuat@mfa.gov.ir

Please send the English letter to the following European authorities:

The Presidency of the European Union, Swedish Prime Minister Mr. Fredrik Reinfeldt
roberta.alenius@primeminister.ministry.se
registrator@primeminister.ministry.se
Foreign Minister of Sweden, Ms. Carl Bildt
registrator@foreign.ministry.se
carl.bildt@foreign.ministry.se
Foreign Minister of Germany, Dr Guido Westerwelle
guido.westerwelle@bundestag.de
guido.westerwelle@auswaertiges-amt.de
Foreign Minister of France, Dr Bernard Kouchner
bernard.kouchner@diplomatie.gouv.fr
Canadian Foreign Mistier, Honorable Lawrence Cannon
l.cannon@international.gc.ca

Please send a copy of your letters to:

IGLHRC
communications+action.alert@iglhrc.org

Sample English Letter to European Officials

Your Excellency:

I am writing to request an immediate intervention to save the lives of a number of Iranian men, including minors and people who were minors at the time the alleged crimes occurred, who are currently in detention after having been convicted of sodomy and sentenced to death. These men include Ghaseem Bashkool, Mahdi Pooran, Hamid Taghi, Ebrahim Hamidi, Mehdi Rezaii, Hamze Chavoshi, Loghman Hamzepour, Mohsen Ghabraii, and Nemat Safavi (see appendix for more information about their cases).

As you know, Iran has one of the highest rates of execution in the world. Imposing the death penalty for sexual crimes is a cruel and unusual form of punishment, which violates international human rights law. The United Nations Human Rights Committee has stated that under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), to which Iran is a party, that applying the death penalty for ‘homosexual acts’ violates Article 6, and that criminalization of private sexual relations between consenting adults is contrary to Articles 17 and 26. Additionally, the Special Rapporteur on Extra-Judicial, Summary, and Arbitrary Executions has expressed concern numerous times about the use of the death penalty for consensual sodomy and has stated that criminalizing sodomy “increases the social stigmatization of members of sexual minorities, which in turn makes them more vulnerable to violence and human rights abuses, including violations of the right to life.”

Over the past three decades, the Iranian authorities have persecuted many of their citizens for sodomy, a crime that the Iranian Penal Code states is punishable by death. Unfortunately, the sodomy law has been frequently used to punish minors and consenting adults who were privately involved in same-sex practices, and those who have never been involved in such practices.

Although the Iranian Penal Code is very strict about the level of evidence required to prove sodomy, including a requirement of the testimony of four, reliable, male witnesses who have seen the sexual act and are able and willing to testify before the court, the courts often rely on inadmissible or unreliable methods. These methods frequently include forced confession under severe physical and psychological pressure or torture, the speculation of the judge (known as the “knowledge of the judge”), forced medical exams, and reports by informers.

The defendants are denied fair and open trials; due to the taboo nature of sexual crimes, lawyers, human rights activists and reporters find it next to impossible to advocate on behalf of the defendants. Furthermore, the Iranian judicial system does not allow independent observers to examine the outcome of the courts and those who dare to advocate for the defendants are often harassed by the government and vigilantes.

The lack of transparency and due process for defendants, the imposition of the death penalty for minors, and the frequent violations of strict guidelines of the Iranian Penal Code for trying sexual crimes demonstrate the fundamentally unjust nature and implementation of the sodomy law in Iran. Regardless of the sexual orientation and gender identity of these individuals, the Iranian government should not murder its own citizens based on allegations of sexual behaviors that are nearly impossible to prove under Iranian legal standards.

I strongly urge you and your government to use your diplomatic influence on Iran to stop the pending executions of the minor and adult men already convicted of sodomy.

Respectfully,

Name:
Organization:
Country:

محضر مبارک حضرت آیت الله سید علی خامنه ای، مقام معظم رهبری جمهوری اسلامی ایران،

پس از عرض سلام و تقدیم احترامات فائقه، محترما به استحضار حضرتعالی میرساند که غرض از نگارش این نامه، تقاضای تجدیدنظر در پرونده تعدادی از شهروندان نوجوان و جوان ایرانی است که طی سنوات گذشته در دادگاه متهم به عمل لواط شده و از سوی مقامات قوه محترمه قضاییه به اعدام محکوم گردیده اند.

نکته قابل توجه در اکثر پرونده های ذیل این است که، قضات محترم دادگاه بر خلاف نص مواد 114 تا 126 قانون مجازات اسلامی، و تنها با استناد به اعترافات اولیه متهمان که در زمان بازپرسی و تحت آزار و اذیت صورت میگیرد و یا به استناد ادعای شاکی (و بدون داشتن 4 شاهد عادل) ، حکم اعدام متهمان را صادر مینمایند. این در حالی است که مطابق ماده 116 قانون مجازات اسلامی، در مورد لواط ” اقرار در صورتي نافذ است كه اقرار كننده بالغ ، عاقل ، مختار و داراي قصد باشد .” مضافا اینکه ماده 118 قانون مجازات اسلامی مقرر میدارد که ” با شهادت كمتر از ‌چهار مرد عادل لواط ثابت نميشود و شهود به قذف محكوم ميشوند‌”.

بعلاوه مکررا مشاهده گردیده است که در غیاب ادله کافی، دادگاه “علم قاضی” را مبنای صدور حکم اعدام برای محکومین به لواط قرار میدهد. هرچند در پرونده های مرتبط با لواط، علم قاضی میتواند بعنوان ادله مورد استناد قرار گیرد، ماده 120 قانون مجازات اسلامی مقرر میدارد که علم قاضی باید “از طرق متعارف حاصل شود”. با توجه به فقدان مدارک و شواهد در این پرونده ها، معلوم نیست قضات محترم از کدام طریق متعارفی علم خود را بدست آورده اند.

از جمله این پرونده های اعدام، میتوان به موارد زیر اشاره نمود:

1. آقای قاسم بشکول فرزند عزیزالله متولد 1363 که در تاریخ 10/3/1386 با قرار بازداشت از سوی شعبه‌ی یک کیفری استان اردبیل به اتهام لواط به عنف روانه‌ی زندان اردبیل شد. قاضی محترم پرونده، آقای بشکول و دوست وی را علی رغم عدم وجود ادله متقن به اتهام “لواط به عنف” به اعدام محکوم نمود و متهمان پرونده اکنون در زندان بسربرده و در صورت عدم الغای حکم اعدامشان، به طناب دار آویخته خواهند شد.

2. مطابق مندرجات نشریه اینترنتی “روز آنلاین” در اول اسفند سال 1387 ، شعبه چهارم دادگاه کيفري استان فارس، فردی را بدلیل ارتکاب عمل لواط به اعدام از طریق پرتاب از کوه محکوم نمود. متعاقب باخبر شدن شاکي پرونده از چنين حکمي، وی رسما اعلام نمود که موضوع شکايتش به کلي منتفي بوده و ‏ ضمن رضايت دادن، درخواست مختومه کردن پرونده را مي نماید. اما دادگاه محترم با این ادله که با توجه به جنبه حق الهي در پرونده لواط، ‏رضايت شاکي برای مختومه نمودن پرونده کافي نيست، حکم به اعاده دادرسي این پرونده مینماید.‏ پرونده مذکور علیرغم وجود شاکی خصوصی همچنان مفتوح بوده و متهم همچنان در انتظار حکم دادگاه میباشد.

3. قضات محترم شعبه دوم دادگاه كيفري استان آذربايجان شرقي چهار نفر به نامهاي حميد طاقی، ابراهيم حمیدی، مهدي پوران (که مطابق اتهامات وارده در زمان ارتکاب عمل 17 سال بیشتر نداشته) و محمد رضایی را به اتهام لواط به استناد علم قاضي در خرداد ماه سال هشتاد و هفت به اعدام محكوم نمودند . متهمین فوق الذکر در حال حاضر در زندان تبریز بوده ودر انتظار تقاضای تجدید نظر در حکم صادره از سوی دیوان عالی کشور به سر میبرند.

مطابق اظهارات وکیل متهمین، این چهار نفر ساعاتی پس از درگیری با چهار جوان که مشغول تخريب زمين كشاورزي متعلق به پدر ابراهيم بودند، از سوی نیروهای انتظامی دستگیر شدند. دستگیری متهمان پس از آن صورت گرفت که جوان 19 ساله‌ای به نام حجت ، که یکی از افراد مشغول به تخریب زمین کشاورزی و دارای سابقه دشمنی خانوادگی با متهمین بود، با مراجعه به پلیس مدعی شد كه این چهار نفر با او درگیرشده و سپس به او تعرض جنسی كرده‌اند. آقایان طاقی، حمیدی، پوران و رضایی میگویند ماموران پلیس سه روز آنها را در کلانتری محل مورد شکنجه و ضرب و شتم قرار دادند تا آنها به “عمل لواط” اعتراف کنند. نیروهای انتظامی حتی پیشنهاد دادند که ” اگر يك نفر از شما اين كار را گردن بگيرد يك نفر شما به زندان خواهد رفت و بقيه شما آزاد می شوید “. علیرغم تداوم ضرب و شتم و فشار پلیس، هیچ یک از دستگیر شدگان به انجام عمل لواط اعتراف ننمودند.

دادگاه ابتدایی با صدور قرار 10 ميليون توماني به عنوان وثيقه برای آزادی موقت متهمین موافقت مینماید، اما چهار متهم نامبرده بدلیل نداشتن مبلغ لازم 28 روز را در زندان سپری نمودند. در تاريخ 20/3/87 دادگاه رسیدگی به این پرونده تشکیل جلسه داد و متهمان پرونده بر بیگناهی خود تاکید کردند. اما معاون دادستان بر اساس اتهام عمل لواط، برای متهمین تقاضای اعدام کرد.

شعبه دوم دادگاه كيفري استان آذربايجان شرقي پس از گذشت سه ماه از تشكيل پرونده با استناد به علم قاضي در تاریخ 30/4/1387حكم به اعدام اين چهار نفر داده است. به گفته وکیل پرونده، شاکی در تمام مراحل دادرسی اعلام کرده بود که شاهدی برای اثبات ادعای خود ندارد ، ولی وی در آخرین جلسه دادگاه سه نفر از اقوام خود را به عنوان شاهد معرفی و آنها نیز شهادت کذب به زیان متهمان پرونده می دهند.

4. در بهمن ماه سال 1377 دوجوان به نامهاي “حمزه چاوي” 19 ساله و “لقمان حمزه پور” 18 ساله در شهرستان سردشت به دليل ارتکاب لواط بازداشت شدند و متاسفانه تا کنون از وضعیت آنها اطلاعی در دست نیست.

5. مطابق اطلاع ما، محسن قبرایی، نوجوان شیرازی از سوی دادگاه به اتهام انجام عمل لواط به اعدام محکوم گردید و مدتی پیش نیز حکم اعدام وی از سوی دیوان عالی کشور تنفیذ گردید. وی همواره بر بیگناهی خود اصرار داشته و حتی مطابق پرونده دادگاه، اتهام لواط وی به زمانی برمیگردد که وی هنوز به سن بلوغ نرسیده بود. با اینهمه چنانچه حکم دادگاه نقض نشود، محسن بزودی اعدام خواهد شد.

6. آقای نعمت صفوي ، فرزند اکبر و متولد سال 1368 هجری خورشیدی، در سال 1385 در سن 16 سالگي به دليل ارتکاب عمل لواط بازداشت و پس از محاکمه در دادگاه اطفال از سوي دادگستري اردبيل به اعدام محکوم گرديد . پس از بیش از32 ماه حبس، سرانجام در تاریخ 14 اسفند سال 1387 دیوان عالی کشور حکم اعدام وی را رد نمود و پرونده وی اکنون برای اعاده دادرسی به شعبه هم ارز اعاده شده است. پرونده آقای صفوی، هنوز مفتوح بوده و احتمال محکومیت اعدام وی بدلیل اتهام لواط در زمانی که وی هنوز به سن بلوغ نرسیده بود، وجود دارد.

رهبر معظم نظام جمهوری اسلامی،

حضرتعالی بعنوان بالاترین مقام سیاسی و مذهبی در ایران، میتوانید از اختیارات قانونی و حقوقی خود استفاده کرده و تقاضای تعلیق یا تنسیخ احکام دادگاه را نموده، یا خواستار اعاده دادرسی در این موارد گردید. ما از آن مقام معظم صمیمانه تقاضا داریم که از قدرت قانونی خود بهره جسته و جان این شهروندان بیگناه را از خطر مرگ نجات دهد.

بعقیده ما مجازات اعدام، خصوصا در موارد مربوط به تجاوز به عنف، مجازاتی ناعادلانه و نامتناسب با ماهیت جنحه است. مطابق نظر کمیسیون حقوق بشر سازمان ملل متحد، کشتن افراد بدلیل انجام عمل همجنسگرایانه { که در قوانین جزایی ایران از آن بعنوان لواط نام برده میشود} نقض ماده 6 ميثاق بين المللي حقوق مدني و سياسي میباشد. بعلاوه کمیسیون حقوق بشر سازمان ملل مقرر میدارد که قتل کسانی که عاقل و بالغ بوده و با اختیار تام خود در خلوت با یکدیگر رابطه همجنسگرایانه برقرار میکنند، ناقض ماده 17 و 26 کنوانسیون فوق میباشد. ماده 9 قانون مدني جمهوری اسلامی ایران مقرر میدارد که « مقررات عهودي كه بر طبق قانون اساسي بين دولت ايران و ساير دول منعقد شده باشد در حكم قانون است». از آنجا که ميثاق ياد شده در سال 1354 به تصويب مجلس شورای ملی رسيده و تاكنون نيز قانوني مخالف با اين بند ميثاق وضع نشده، حکم اعدام برای عمل لواط، هم ناقض ميثاق بين المللي حقوق مدني و سياسي و هم ناقض قانون مدنی جمهوری اسلامی ایران است .

در برخی از موارد فوق، متهمان پرونده ، بدلیل ارتکاب عملی که بعنوان یک طفل و قبل از رسیدن به سن بلوغ صورت گرفته است به اعدام محکوم گردیده اند. این امر خلاف مقررات حقوقی وبین المللی است. ماده 49 قانون مجازات اسلامی مقرر میدارد که ” اطفال درصورت ارتكاب جرم مبري از مسووليت كيفري هستند”. مطابق بند 5 ماده 6 ميثاق بين المللي حقوق مدني و سياسي: «حكم مجازات مرگ نبايد براي جرم‌هايي كه افراد زير 18 سال مرتكب شده اند صادر شود». ماده 9 قانون مدني جمهوری اسلامی ایران مقرر میدارد که « مقررات عهودي كه بر طبق قانون اساسي بين دولت ايران و ساير دول منعقد شده باشد در حكم قانون است». از آنجا که ميثاق ياد شده در سال 1354 به تصويب مجلس شورای ملی رسيده و تاكنون نيز قانوني مخالف با اين بند ميثاق وضع نشده، بنابر اين حکم اعدام اطفال زیر 18 سال، هم ناقض ميثاق بين المللي حقوق مدني و سياسي و هم ناقض قانون مدنی جمهوری اسلامی ایران است .

جدای از قوانین و تعهدات بین المللی که جمهوری اسلامی ایران بدانها پایبند است ، بسیاری از علمای معظم شیعه، از جمله آیات اعظام صانعی و محقق داماد، حکم مجازات اعدام برای جرایم جنسی را در زمان غیبت امام معصوم لازم الاجرا نمی دانند.

پیشاپیش از مساعدت معظم له برای حل عاجل این پرونده ها سپاسگذارم و عاجزانه خواهشمندم ترتیبی اتخاذ فرمایید تا در آینده نزدیک شاهد لغو مجازات اعدام برای همه جرایم جنسی، خصوصا عمل لواط، باشیم.

با تقدیم احترامات فائقه

رونوشت:

– حضرت آیت الله آملی لاریجانی ریاست محترم قوه قضائیه جمهوری اسلامی ایران

– جناب آقاي منوچهر متكي وزير محترم امور خارجه جمهوري اسلامي ايران

“Kill gays” preacher hosted by London universities

Vice Chancellor urged to resign, after ignoring complaints

Student’s Union backs hosting Islamist hate-mongers

London – 24 November 2009

“University College London is planning to host an extremist Islamist preacher, Abu Usamah, who endorses the murder of gay people and of Muslims who give up their faith. He also encourages the beating of little girls who refuse to wear the hijab,” said human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell.

“The university would never allow a lecture by a white supremacist who used racist abuse and advocated the murder of black people. Why the double standards?” queried Mr Tatchell.

Abu Usamah has been invited to address the Islamic Society at University College London next Monday, 30 November.

On 4 November, he was given a similar platform by City University.

“The Vice Chancellor of City University London, Julius Weinberg, should resign. He has ignored student’s complaints after the Islamic Society organised an on-campus meeting addressed by Abu Usamah.

“It is utterly disgraceful that the student’s union has defended the hosting of this hate preacher, and that the Vice Chancellor has not responded to protests from students. This violates the equal opportunities policies of the university and the student’s union,” added Mr Tatchell.

Abu Usamah was recorded for Channel Four’s television documentary, Undercover Mosque, as saying: “Do you practice homosexuality with men? Take that homosexual man ….and throw him off the mountain…. If I was to turn around and I was to call homosexuals perverted, dirty filthy dogs that should be murdered, that’s my freedom of speech isn’t it?”

On Muslims who leave the faith he said: “Kill him in the Islamic state…If the Imam wants to crucify him, he should crucify him. The person is put up on the wood and he’s left there to bleed to death for three days.”

Abu Usamah was also filmed by Channel Four deriding women as “deficient”, inferior to men and religously and intellectually “incomplete.” He advocates violence against little girls who refuse to wear the hijab: “She should start hijab from the age of seven, by the age of ten it becomes an obligation on us to force her to wear hijab and if she doesn’t wear hijab, we hit her.”

Another speaker given a platform at the same City University event on 4 November, Murtaza Khan, was also caught on the Undercover Mosque documentary calling Jews and Christians “enemies” and non-Muslims “filthy”.

“The Vice Chancellor seems unwilling to uphold the university’s equal opportunities policy. He has failed to defend Muslim, Jewish, Christian, gay and women students and staff against these hate-mongers. Having neglected to ensure that the university is a safe, non-threatening place to work and study, Julius Weinberg should stand down,” said Mr Tatchell.

A copy of the City University newspaper news report and editorial on the case follows below.

Further information:

Peter Tatchell – 0207 403 1790

Fran Singh, Editor, The Inquirer
fran@cityinquirer.com
0781 799 8889

A copy of the City University newspaper news report and editorial on the case:

Storm over extremist preachers

The Inquirer, City University London newspaper

18 NOVEMBER 2009
By Gemma Meredith

http://cityinquirer.com/?p=1156

Lesbian and gay students have condemned City’s Islamic Society for hosting an extreme Islamist preacher at a campus event.

Abu Usamah spoke at the Islamic Society’s charity fundraising event “The People of Paradise and Hellfire” on Wednesday 4 November. He is notorious for his appearance in a Channel 4 documentary two years ago making inflammatory comments about homosexuals, women, non-Muslims and those who have left the faith.

The film recorded him saying: “Do you practice homosexuality with men? Take that homosexual man and throw him off the mountain.” On Muslims who leave the faith he said: “If the Imam wants to crucify him, he should crucify him. The person is put up on the wood and he’s left there to bleed to death for three days.”

He also claimed on the record that women were inferior to men: “Allah has created the woman, even if she has a PhD, deficient. Her intellect is incomplete. Deficient. She may be suffering from hormones that will make her emotional. It takes two witnesses of a woman to equal the one witness of the man.”

The City University Lesbian, Gay , Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Society released a statement on Usamah’s appearance, saying: “Providing publicity for extremists who preach hate risks not just freedom of speech, but all human rights, democracy and ultimately, the well-being of students at City University.

“We strongly oppose the decision to invite extremist Abu Usamah to speak at one of the largest lecture theatres at City University. Inviting such a controversial extremist who has previously expressed offensive views about homosexuals, women and non-Muslims to our university campus is morally and ethically wrong.

“Events such as this, led by a speaker who shares generally immoral views including homophobia, is likely to lead to an already increasing rise in hate crime in London.”

Usamah avoided controversy at the City event, delivering a moderate speech. Although he condemned killing in the name of jihad (holy war), he also said: “Jihad is from our religion. We will not renounce our religion.”

It is not only Usumah’s appearance that has caused concern. The opening speaker, Murthadah Khan, was also caught on the Undercover Mosque documentary calling Jews and Christians “enemies” and “filthy”. Publicity for the event said: “Bring all your friends; Muslims, kuffaar.” Kuffaar is a derogatory term for non-Muslims.

The Inquirer offered an interview to the Islamic Society, which declined to comment. Acting vice-chancellor Julius Weinberg was also unavailable for comment.

Marcus Mikely, vice-president of communications and publications for City students’ union, said: “The university has no right to stop this from happening as the event was based around charity, not his views on other subjects. If the union had received complaints prior to the event, we would have looked into it.”

This is not the first time the Islamic Society has courted controversy. In April it invited Anwar al-Awlaki to address a meeting via video link from Yemen.

Al-Awlaki, an American, has been accused by the US Government of encouraging “terrorist acts” via the internet. He was interviewed by the FBI after the 9/11 attacks, when he was accused of serving as a spiritual adviser to two of the terrorists. He recently had communication with Major Nidal Hassan, the US soldier who killed 13 people at the Fort Hood army base. He has described Hassan as “a hero”.

In April the university officials intervened, warning the society that broadcasting al-Awlaki’s speech would break university rules. The university’s official code of practice on freedom of speech says: “We will guarantee by policy and action the right of free speech within the university community unless the exercise of such a right can be shown to lead to or increase significantly the probability of the discrimination of individuals or groups, harm to individuals or groups within the university, or the university or the community within which the university is located.”

EDITORIAL – The Inquirer says

19 NOVEMBER 2009

http://cityinquirer.com/?p=1281

Tragically, the Islamic society has become both victim as well as a perpetrator of discrimination within the space of a week. The horrific mob attack in which four Asians were stabbed (two of them City students), appears to have been racially motivated.

There is no evidence to suggest the attack is in anyway linked to the invitation of radical Muslim preachers Abu Usamah and Murthadah Khan, which was strongly condemned by the LGBT society, but there must be questions asked as to why extremism has been allowed to prosper in the Islamic society. Consider these quotes by Abu Usamah and Murthadah Khan: “Do you practice homosexuality with men? Take that homosexual man and throw him off the mountain.”

“Allah has created the woman, even if she has a PhD, deficient. Her intellect is incomplete. Deficient. It takes two witnesses of a woman to equal the one witness of the man.” “Those whom the wrath of God is upon is the Jew and the Christian. These people are enemies towards us.”

Why does the Islamic society continue to invite hate preachers to the university? It certainly does nothing to promote integration with other communities and can often lead to dangerous and incorrect stereotyping.

It is not the university’s place to ban everyone who challenges and pushes the boundaries – as it has done on past occasions with varying inconsistency. Free speech is a universal right and should be defended, but hate speech should not. Equally, we should be free to criticise those who wish to divide us, spread homophobia and sexism, and call Jews and Christians “filthy”.

The Islamic Society needs to take more responsibility about whom it extends invitations to. The university, a place for education, should not be the arena for non-educational talks from radicals, especially when it causes serious offence to large proportions of the student population.

Since the attacks the Islamic Society has published a graphic on its website saying “Islamaphobia is terrorism”. It also added: “Non-Muslims are also encouraged to take care of themselves and be cautious of any suspicious behaviour. Our concern is not restricted to Muslim welfare only.” With no pun intended, perhaps the society needs to practice what it preaches a little bit more. It doesn’t appear to be too concerned about the welfare of those whose Khan and Usamah’s opinions so actively risk.

Further information: Fran Singh, Editor, The Inquirer
fran@cityinquirer.com
0781 799 8889

ENDS

www.petertatchell.net

No Sharia rally in London
Oppose all religious laws & courts

Call for secularism & universal human rights

London – 21 November 2009

Muslims, ex-Muslims and non-Muslims joined forces in London to protest against Sharia and against all religious laws and courts.

The themes of the protest were “one law for all” and “universal human rights.”

Expressing solidarity with Muslims resisting the “inequalities and inhumanities” of Sharia law, the protesters affirmed their commitment to democracy, secularism, equality and human rights.

The rally took place in Hyde Park today, Saturday 21 November 2009

Among those addressing the crowds were speakers from Iran, Iraq, Bangladesh and the UK. They expressed solidarity with Muslim communities worldwide and condemned racist, anti-Muslim far right and fascist groups.

“Sharia law is a form of religious dogma and tyranny. It is homophobic, sexist and anti-democratic. It persecutes LGBT Muslims. Same-sex acts carry the death penalty in several Islamic states. Gay people can be stoned to death or hanged in countries like Saudi Arabia and Iran. We support LGBT Muslims – and all Muslims – who are fighting for their freedom,” said Peter Tatchell of the LGBT human rights group OutRage! and Green Party parliamentary candidate for Oxford East.

“This protest supports secular democracy. Secularism is often confused with anti-clericalism. The two are not the same. Secularism is not against religion per se. It is against giving religion privileged status, rights and protections.

“We believe there should be a separation of religion from the state. No faith should dominate any government and seek to impose its creed on the rest of society. When this happens, freedom of expression is diminished and minority faiths are victimised.

“For these reasons, secularism is not only an important element of freedom of expression. It is also the best guarantee of religious freedom, as it prevents any one faith becoming politically dominant and abusing its powers to oppress people of other faiths,” Mr Tatchell added.

Lib Dem MP Evan Harris condemned the government for “caving in to religious pressure.” He cited the way Britain’s equality laws allow religious bodies to discriminate against LGBT people and people in certain circumstances. Mr Harris also condemned the government for giving privileged advisory status on policy and legislation to often unrepresentative faith leaders.

Roy Brown of the International Humanist and Ethical Union warned that over 50 Islamic states, with the support of many developing countries, are currently “demanding that the United Nations outlaw the defamation of religion.” This would restrict free speech by criminalising criticism and condemnation of religious beliefs and institutions, he said.

A speaker from Iraq, Issam Shukri, told the rally how Islamist militias linked to the cleric and MP Muqtada al-Sadr had executed dozens of women who they deemed to be improperly dressed because were not fully covered head-to-toe. These militias have also organised death squad executions of LGBT Iraqis.

Maryan Namazie, the rally organiser, told the crowd:

“Our rally is being held to mark Universal Children’s Day and the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. We are not defending western values. We are defending universal humanitarian values. Sharia adversely affects the rights, lives and freedoms of countless human beings across the world. Opposing Sharia law is a crucial step in defending universal equal rights and secularism, and showing real solidarity with people living under and resisting Sharia.”

Philosopher AC Grayling warned that Sharia law was an attack on precious, hard-won, civil liberties. It was a threat to freedom of speech, freedom of belief and freedom of conscience, he said.

Rahila Gupta from Southall Black Sisters highlighted the way religion and cultural tradition are often anti-women and homophobic. She urged solidarity with women resisting patriarchal clericalism and demanded equal rights for women, whatever their cultural, ethnic or religious background.

Excerpts from Peter Tatchell’s speech at the Hyde Park rally:

“We are here to defend Muslim people – and all people everywhere – who are victims of religious tyranny.

“We support the many victims of Sharia law, especially the Muslim women who are campaigning for equality. We cannot accept the way Islamic states, including western allies like Saudi Arabia, restrict women’s freedom of movement, make women subject to the control of male guardians, deny women access to certain jobs and positions in government and enforce the compulsory veiling of women with the hijab, niqab, jilbab or burqa.

“We stand in opposition to all religious laws in Britain and worldwide.

“We express our support for the many courageous, inspiring Muslims who are campaigning against the inequalities and inhumanities of Sharia law, often at great risk to their liberty and life.

“Contrary to the way our critics are trying to misrepresent our rally, this is not an attack on Muslims or Islam. We are here to support Muslims who are resisting Sharia law.

“We defend Muslims and people of all faiths against hatred and discrimination. The victimisation of people because of their religious beliefs is just as wrong as victimising people because of their race, gender or sexuality.

“In a democracy, everyone should be subject to the same laws, with the same rights and responsibilties. Religious rulings should not influence the laws or courts in any way.

“We believe that Muslims and all peoples worldwide should have rights, freedoms and choices, in accordance with the principles of equality and non-discrimination that are enshrined in the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights. These are not western values. They are international humanitarian values, agreed by the global consensus of the member states of the UN.

“It is wrong to tolerate the denial of human rights to non-white Muslims in the Middle East, Africa and Asia, when most of us would never tolerate the denial of these rights to white (and non-white) people in Britain.

“There should be no double standards. No moral or cultural relativism. Defend universal human rights. One law for all,” said Mr Tatchell.

For further information and photos, contact Maryam Namazie onelawforall@gmail.com

Web: www.onelawforall.org.uk

Peter Tatchell

Terror Campaign Against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Iraqis Continues Unchecked by Iraqi Government

IRAQI LGBT – November 2009 – The rise of fundamentalist groups in Iraq since the 2003 U.S. led invasion has proven deadly to LGBT Iraqis, who are now being forced to either hide or face the consequences.

Using the internet as a means to track down new victims, militia members are now employing computer analysts to monitor traffic on gay dating and networking websites in the region. They work with internet café owners to single out people who frequent these sites and set up fake profiles in the attempt to lure them out.

On the 28th of August, police raided the houses of Asad Galib and Faeq Ismail, both 24 years old, and took them into custody. They were held and questioned for about four hours, accused of viewing gay websites in an internet café on the 21st of July. Both men denied the accusations and explained that the websites had already been open when they had begun using the computers. They were later released and are now in contact with Iraqi LGBT, a London based organization working to support and protect LGBT individuals in Iraq.

Others who have been accused or are suspected of such activities have not been as lucky.

On the 2nd of September, the body of 21-year-old student Mizher Hussien was discovered in Al Najaf, a city south of Baghdad. His head and genitals had been severed, and he had the word “pervert” written in black across his chest. The details of his murder are unknown, and Iraqi police have refused to launch an investigation into the cause or motivation of the crime.

On the 18th of September in Al Shatra Amara, two bodies were found exhibiting signs of torture. They had both been decapitated and left with a paper stating, “This is the end of all pervert homosexuals”.

Iraqi LGBT has been working since 2003 to raise awareness of the abuses being committed against LGBT people in Iraq, as well as provide protection to those who have been targeted. The organization currently funds a number of safe houses in the region, with nearly 100 individuals in Iraq directly benefitting from their work. In addition, Iraqi LGBT has been involved in securing asylum for Iraqi refugees who have been forced to flee the country.

Unfortunately, Iraqi LGBT has not been able to help everyone. The organization estimates that over 720 LGBT men and women have been murdered by these extremist militias in the last six years. The Iraqi government has largely been absent in pursuing the roaming death squads who carry out these acts, likely due to the influence of extremist Shia religious parties that are calling for a moral cleansing of Iraq.

With extremist militias threatening all those known to support LGBT rights, including the 2006 raid of an Iraqi LGBT planning meeting in which five activists were arrested, there is little hope for Iraqis suffering under the new socio-political climate. Once the most liberal and secular of the Arab nations, nowadays a religious extremism has taken hold of the country to the detriment of its people.

Iraqi LGBT calls for immediate international action to prevent the further torture and execution of LGBT people in Iraq. More information and details on making donations to the safe houses effort can be found at the Iraqi LGBT blog:

http://www.facebook.com/l/97cbb;iraqilgbtuk.blogspot.com/2009/11/terror-campaign-against-lesbian-gay.html

Brussels says churches must lift ban on employing homosexuals
EU decides British government was wrong to allow exemptions under equality law

The government is being forced by the European commission to rip up controversial exemptions that allow church bodies to refuse to employ homosexual staff.

It has emerged that the commission wrote to the government last week raising concerns that the UK had incorrectly implemented an EU directive prohibiting discrimination on the grounds of a person’s sexual orientation.

The ruling follows a complaint from the National Secular Society, which argued that the opt-outs went further than was permitted under the directive and had created “illegal discrimination against homosexuals”.

The commission agreed. A “reasoned opinion” by its lawyers informs the government that its “exceptions to the principle of non-discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation for religious employers are broader than that permitted by the directive”.

The highly unusual move means that the government now has no choice but to redraft anti-discrimination laws, which is likely to prompt a furore among church groups.

In anticipation of a possible backlash from the commission, the government has already inserted new clauses into its equality bill. But even if the bill is jettisoned, future governments will be bound by the commission’s ruling.

Under the new proposals being drafted by the government, religious organisations will be able to refuse to employ homosexuals only if their job involves actively promoting or practising a religion. A blanket refusal to employ any homosexuals would no longer be possible.

“This ruling is a significant victory for gay equality and a serious setback for religious employers who have been granted exemptions from anti-discrimination law,” said human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell. “It is a big embarrassment for the British government, which has consistently sought to appease religious homophobes by granting them opt-outs from key equality laws. The European commission has ruled these opt-outs are excessive.”

The employment directive outlawing discrimination in the workplace was finalised by the European commission in 2000 and became law in the UK in early 2003, following a public consultation exercise. At the time there were accusations that the government had “caved in” to religious groups that mounted a fierce lobbying campaign to be exempted from the new laws.

Under the terms of the exemption, religious groups were allowed to refuse a position to a homosexual employee “so as to avoid conflicting with the strongly held religious convictions of a significant number of the religion’s followers”.

“In other words, if a significant number of followers of an organised religion didn’t like it, there was no protection for a gay employee,” said Keith Porteous-Wood, executive director of the National Secular Society. “Now the government must demonstrate its commitment to equality, rather than continuing to jump to the church’s tune.”

The EU’s equal opportunities commissioner, Vladimir Špidla, said: “We call on the UK government to make the necessary changes to its anti-discrimination legislation as soon as possible so as to fully comply with the EU rules.”

But religious groups expressed alarm at the move. The Christian charity, Care, said: “If evangelical churches cannot be sure that they can employ practising evangelicals with respect to sexual ethics, how will they be able to continue?”

www.petertatchell.net

You can follow Peter on Twitter at http://twitter.com/PeterTatchell or join the Peter Tatchell Human Rights Campaign Facebook group at http://tinyurl.com/cj9y6s

Peter Tatchell is the Green Party parliamentary candidate for Oxford East
www.greenoxford.com/peter

ARDHIS + INTER LGBT + ACT UP PARIS + SOS HOMOPHOBIE

TsaïCommuniqué de presse inter associatif
Paris, le 5 novembre 2009

Deux homos menacés d’une expulsion imminente : la France doit leur assurer protection et leur permettre de faire valoir leurs droits à l’asile ou au séjour !

L’Ardhis, SOS homophobie, Act Up-Paris et l’Inter-LGBT demandent l’annulation des procédures d’expulsion et la régularisation de leur situation administrative.

Merlin, Camerounais de 30 ans fuyant les persécutions homophobes dont il était la cible, a été arrêté à Hendaye, tout juste une heure après avoir passé la frontière, et ce après un périple de plusieurs mois à travers l’Afrique et l’Espagne. Il envisageait de construire une nouvelle vie ici en France, un pays où il serait protégé ! Mais son dessein s’effondre. Son destin, s’il retourne dans son pays, est particulièrement sombre : au Cameroun, les actes homosexuels sont punissables d’un emprisonnement d’un à cinq ans et d’une amende de 20 000 à 200 000 francs CFA. Des arrestations et condamnations sont régulièrement prononcées au nom de cet article. Par ailleurs, la stigmatisation sociale et le chantage sont courants.

Nos associations rappellent que conformément à l’article 6 de la directive 2004/83/CE, le statut de réfugié, au titre de l’asile conventionnel ou de la protection subsidiaire, doit être accordé aux personnes LGBT ayant été ou risquant d’être persécutées par les pouvoirs publics de leur pays d’origine, ou par quelque autre acteur non étatique.

Dans le même centre de rétention se trouve Tsaï1, chinois de 37 ans, diplômé de lettres françaises et de gestion des entreprises à l’université de Nantes. Il est aujourd’hui professeur de chinois ; et vit en couple depuis huit ans à Pantin (93) avec un Français, Jean-Paul Marlet. Dans la suite de ses études de gestion, Tsaï travaillait en CDI pour une entreprise d’import-export de la région parisienne, mais son employeur a été « contraint » de le licencier parce qu’il ne s’était pas vu attribuer un titre de séjour « Salarié » après l’expiration de son titre de séjour « Etudiant », alors même que l’employeur le soutenait dans ses démarches. Il est ainsi entré dans l’irrégularité et est depuis obligé de travailler « au noir » pour gagner sa vie. Entre 2000 et ce jour, Monsieur Tsaï a ainsi établi sa vie privée et familiale sur notre sol et il exerce une activités prfessionnelle stable. Son retour forcé serait préjudiciable, tant pour lui que pour ses proches. Il a passé 10 ans de sa vie en France et sa vie est bien ici !

Pour chacun d’entre eux, l’expulsion vers leur pays d’origine les expose à la haine, aux persécutions, à des peines de prison du fait de leur homosexualité, qui détruirait la nouvelle vie qu’ils s’étaient employés à bâtir.

Nous rappelons qu’il est ordinairement difficile de faire la preuve rapide de persécutions ou de rejets subis dans son pays d’origine et que l’orientation sexuelle n’est pas quelque chose qui se « démontre » de façon évidente. Chaque situation nationale demande un travail d’information lent et difficile, afin de mettre à jour l’importance des risques encourus par les personnes homosexuelles ou transgenres. Pendant ce temps, des solutions d’accueil provisoire doivent être trouvées, de façon à fournir aux demandeurs d’asile et aux associations qui les accompagnent le temps de préparer des dossiers circonstanciés.

En décembre 2008, le gouvernement français, à l’instar de Rama Yade, alors secrétaire d’État des Droits de l’homme, a fait voter la dépénalisation de l’homosexualité et de l’identité de genre à l’Organisation des Nations Unies. Au regard de cette initiative, relevant de la lutte contre l’homophobie à un niveau international, nous attendons, pour le moins, que ce même gouvernement accorde le droit d’asile en France à des LGBT persécutés dans leur pays d’origine.

L’Ardhis, SOS homophobie, Act Up-Paris et l’Inter-LGBT demandent donc aujourd’hui la libération de Merlin et de Tsaï et ce :

* afin que la demande d’asile déposée par Merlin puisse être instruite sans urgence et qu’un éventuel recours devant la Cour Nationale du Droit d’Asile puisse être effectivement examiné
* afin que Tsaï puisse demander une régularisation de situation administrative arguant de sa situation de compagnon d’un Français depuis plus de 7 ans et qu’il fait preuve à ce jour de plus de 10 ans de présence sur notre territoire

Contacts Presse:

Audrey Grelombe pour Act Up Paris: 0625479136

audreygrelombe@yahoo.fr

Bartholomé Girard pour SOS Homophobie: 0628320250

bartholome.girard@sos-homophobie.org

Philippe Castel pour Inter LGBT: 0625768192

philippe.castel@inter-lgbt.org

Thomas Fouquet-Lapar pour Ardhis : 0619640391

ardhis@hotmail.fr

www.ardhis.org

www.actupparis.org

www.inter-lgbt.org

www.sos-homophobie.org

Nous appelons toutes personnes, physiques ou morales, à solliciter le préfet des Pyrénées Atlantiques (64). Les associations peuvent aussi écrire directement au ministère et à l’Elysée (demander nous les contacts : ardhis@hotmail.fr).

Une lettre-type vous est proposée:

Monsieur le Préfet,

Vous avez engagé deux procédures d’éloignement envers un ressortissant chinois et un ressortissant camerounais, sous les références d’Aprf suivantes: 09-64-00368 et 09-64-00371. Nous vous alertons que ces ressortissants étrangers sont des personnes vulnérables et qu’il est urgent que notre pays leur assure protection.

Merlin (prénom d’emprunt), Camerounais de 30 ans fuyant les persécutions homophobes dont il était la cible, a été arrêté à Hendaye, tout juste une heure après avoir passé la frontière et ce après un périple de plusieurs mois à travers l’Afrique et l’Espagne. Il envisageait de construire une nouvelle vie ici en France, un pays où il serait protégé ! Mais son dessein s’effondre. Son destin, s’il retourne dans son pays, est particulièrement sombre : au Cameroun, les actes homosexuels sont punissables d’un emprisonnement d’un à cinq ans et d’une amende de 20 000 à 200 000 francs CFA. Des arrestations et condamnations sont régulièrement prononcées au nom de cet article. Par ailleurs, la stigmatisation sociale et le chantage sont courantes. Nos associations rappellent que conformément à l’article 6 de la directive 2004/83/CE, le statut de réfugié, au titre de l’asile conventionnel ou de la protection subsidiaire, doit être accordé aux personnes LGBT ayant été ou risquant d’être persécutées par les pouvoirs publics de leur pays d’origine, ou par quelque autre acteur non étatique.

Dans le même centre de rétention se trouve Tsaï (prénom d’emprunt), chinois de 37 ans, diplômé de lettres françaises et de gestion des entreprises à l’université de Nantes. Il est aujourd’hui professeur de chinois ; il vit en couple depuis huit ans à Pantin (93) avec un Français, Jean Paul Marlet.

Dans la suite de ses études de gestion, Tsaï travaillait en CDI pour une entreprise d’import-export de la région parisienne, mais son employeur a été « contraint » de le licencier parce qu’il ne s’était pas vu attribué par la préfecture un titre de séjour « Salarié » après l’expiration de son titre de séjour « Etudiant », alors même que l’employeur le soutenait dans ses démarches. Il est ainsi entré dans l’irrégularité et est depuis obligé de travailler “au noir” pour gagner sa vie. Entre 2000 et ce jour, Tsaï a ainsi établi sa vie privée et familiale sur notre sol et il a développé une activité professionnelle stable. Son retour forçé serait préjudiciable, tant pour lui que pour ses proches. Il a passé 10 ans de sa vie en France et sa vie est bien ici !.

Nous vous demandons donc instamment de bien vouloir libérer ces deux personnes et leur permettre ainsi de continuer leurs démarches administratives :

· afin que la demande d’asile déposée par Merlin puissent être instruite sans urgence et qu’un éventuel recours devant la Cour Nationale du Droit d’Asile puisse être effectivement examiné

· afin que Tsaï puisse demander une régularisation de situation administrative sur le motif de sa situation de compagnon d’un Français depuis plus de 7 anzs et qu’il fait preuve à ce jour de plus de 10 ans de présence sur notre territoire

Nos associations s’engagent à les accompagner dans leurs démarches

Nous vous remercions de votre bienveillance et nous vous prions de croire, monsieur le Préfet, en notre plus haute considération.

Où adresser la lettre ?

dominique.schmitt@gironde.pref.gouv.fr

prefet@gironde.pref.gouv.fr

guesdong@club-internet.fr

philippe.rey@pyrenees-atlantiques.pref.gouv.fr

pierre.larroque-laborde@pyrenees-atlantiques.pref.gouv.fr

Fax secrétariat du préfet : 05 59 98 26 44,

Fax du bureau des étrangers : 05 59 98 26 42

Pour obtenir de l’aide, ecrivez a: ardhis-help@ardhis.org