Friday, December 02, 2005

The Blade: U.S. State Dept, Antigay Rights Abuses

Today's Washington Blade has an excellent story about the recent arrests of gay men in the United Arab Emirates, recent reports out of Iran about possible new executions of homosexuals and an effort I'm involved with to persuade gay and human rights advocates to submit reports of abuses to the U.S. State Department.

From the Blade article:

>Last year’s State Department human rights report chronicled several anti-gay abuses. Michael Petrelis, a blogger and gay rights activist, has started a campaign with Peter Tatchell of England’s Outrage, to urge people to report anti-gay abuses to the State Department the week of Dec. 4-10.

>“Even though this administration is hostile to gay equality, that State Department report is impressive,” Petrelis said. “Despite the anti-gay policies of Bush and Cheney, there is an effort to occasionally speak out against these abuses around the world.”

>The State Department, however, has not commented on the reported recent executions of two Iranian men for homosexuality. Clay said that is because those incidents have not been confirmed.

>Human Rights Watch has condemned the public hangings of two men in northern Iran for “lavat,” or sex between men, which is punishable by death in Iran. Sex acts between women are punishable by lashings until the fourth offense when they are punishable by death, according to Human Rights Watch.

>“Human Rights Watch is concerned that under the new political leadership that we’re seeing more persecution of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people as potentially part of a broader crackdown on so-called moral crimes,” said Stern. [...]

>Campaign to report anti-gay abuses
Dec. 4-10, send reports to:

LeRoy Potts
U.S. Department of State
Office of Country Reports & Asylum Affairs
Room H242
2401 E St., NW
Washington, D.C. 20037

No comments: