While the UN devotes its human rights operations to the demonization of the democratic state of Israel above all others and condemns the United States more often than the vast majority of non-democracies around the world, the voices of real victims around the world must be heard.
The Islamic Republic of Iran publicly hanged a 31-year-old Iranian man after he was found guilty of charges related to violations of Iran's anti-gay laws, according to the state-controlled Iranian Students' News Agency.
The unidentified man was hanged on January 10 in the southwestern city of Kazeroon based on criminal violations of "lavat-e be onf" – sexual intercourse between two men, as well as kidnapping charges, according to ISNA. Iran's radical sharia law system prescribes the death penalty for gay sex.
The ISNA reported that the 31-year-old kidnapped two 15-year-olds. The opaque inner workings of Iran's judicial system create enormous difficulties for journalists and human rights advocates to examine judicial cases.
"The LGBT community in Iran has lived in terror for the last 40 years," said Alireza Nader, CEO of Washington, DC-based research and advocacy organization New Iran. "Next time Foreign Minister Zarif speaks in Washington, the host and audience should ask him why his regime is one of the top executioner of gays in the world."
According to a 2008 British WikiLeaks dispatch, Iran's mullah regime executed "between 4,000 and 6,000 gays and lesbians" since the Islamic Revolution in 1979.
"Iran is not only the most dangerous threat to Israel's security, it is also a champion in the state murder of actual or perceived homosexuals," said Volker Beck, a German Party Green Party politician and a lecturer at the Center for Studies in Religious Sciences (CERES) at the Ruhr University in Bochum. "It would be desirable for the federal government to make Iran's human rights violations more of an issue."
Beck played a key role in bringing about marriage equality in Germany for gays and lesbians.
Germany is slated to appoint a banker, who would work in France, to administer a financial mechanism to bypass US sanctions against Iran's regime. The EU seeks to circumvent US sanctions against Iran to preserve the 2015 nuclear deal. The United States withdrew from the deal in 2018 because of its alleged deficiencies, including the regime's destabilizing policies in the Middle East. The US government has highlighted the widespread human rights violations in Iran.
Kazeroon is the capital of Kazeroon County, where the execution of the 31-year-old man was carried out, and is located in Fars Province, Iran. The city has population of 143,869 as of 2017. The ISNA report said "the citizens of Kazeroon expressed satisfaction and thanked the judiciary." The statement about citizens of Kazeroon could not be independently verified.
In 2016, The Jerusalem Post reported Iran's regime had executed a gay adolescent that year – the first confirmed execution of someone convicted as a juvenile in the Islamic Republic.
Hassan Afshar, 19, was hanged in Arak Prison in Iran's Markazi Province on July 18, 2016, after he was convicted of "forced male-to-male anal intercourse" in early 2015.
In 2011, Iran's regime executed three Iranian men after being found guilty of charges related to homosexuality.
Axel M. Hochrein, a spokesman for the Hirschfeld-Eddy-Stiftung Foundation, which fights to advance the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, told the Post:
"Iran is one of the worst states for the persecution of LGBTI. The state publicly and regularly boasts of the execution of gay men. The ability to influence the Iranian regime regarding inhuman violations of human rights is very limited because of the isolated situation in the country. Therefore, our foundation calls for increased efforts by the international community to help LGBTI people escape and provide safe asylum."