A 20-year-old gay man in Iran was murdered by members of his own family last week after being outed.
Alireza Fazeli-Monfared (pictured) knew he was in danger and had plans to flee Iran for Turkey where his boyfriend, a refugee, lives.
Sadly, he never made it. Last week, his own half-brother and cousins reportedly kidnapped and killed him after finding out he was gay.
Local group 6Rang reported the details of the man’s death in a statement.
The Iranian military had earlier rejected Fazeli-Monfared after discovering his homosexuality.
The military listed his sexual orientation on his official military exemption card.
But that card cost Fazeli-Monfared his life after members of Fazeli-Monfared’s family discovered it.
They then kidnapped him, murdered him and dumped his body outside of his city.
“The men accused of Alireza’s murder contacted his mother on Wednesday [May 5],” 6Rang explained.
“[They] informed her that she could find her son’s dead body laying at the foot of a palm tree.
“Alireza’s mother is, understandably, in a state of shock.
“She is suffering an immense amount of grief because of the death of her only child. [She] has been hospitalized as a result.
“Alireza’s partner, who currently lives in Turkey, has informed 6rang that all three men associated with the murder have been arrested and charged with first-degree murder.”
Activist group condemns homophobia after murder of gay Iranian
Under Iranian law, same-sex relations are illegal and punishable by death or life imprisonment.
Horrific so-called “honour killings” occur in some countries after a victim is perceived to bring “shame” or “dishonour” upon their family.
Iran requires all its male citizens above the age of 18 to enlist in military service.
However, the military exempts gay men and transgender women on the basis of “mental disorders” and “sexual depravities.”
6rang also slammed the military for “outing” Fazeli-Monfared by listing his homosexuality on the official exemption card.
They say the cards facilitate discrimination by law enforcement, judicial officials, education officials, and employers.
6rang vowed to “work tirelessly” to ensure there is a thorough investigation and fair trial into Alireza’s murder.
“We will continue the work of bringing the cultural and legal roots of this evil in Iranian society to light,” the group said.
“6rang calls upon everyone to utilide this horrendous tragedy as motivation to make long overdue demands and inquiries into the human rights abuses towards the Iranian LGBTQI community.
“The current situation a serious danger to gay men.
“But gay women, along with the Iranian trans community, experience all kinds of violence and coercion on a daily basis.”
‘The world must hear their cries for help’
Iranian journalist Masih Alinejad also reported Fazeli-Monfared’s death on Twitter.
“Iran’s LGBTQ community is brutalised both by the regime and by bigotry in certain families,” Masih said.
“Through its homophobic laws, anti-gay propaganda, and light sentences for honour killings, the Islamic Republic of Iran is responsible for facilitating the murder of countless members of the LGBTQ community in Iran.”
Masih said many other LGBTIQ Iranians send her accounts of “harrowing stories of brutality by security forces”.
“The world must hear the cries for help of Iran’s LGBTQ community. The Islamic Republic of Iran both directly and indirectly brutalises them,” Masih said.
“This community is yearning to be heard by the world.”
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