Afghan homosexuals describe the Taliban takeover as a “nightmare” and live in fear of being executed at any time.
“We can’t go out because we’re just scared for our lives,” a 21-year-old gay man called Ghulam, whose real name has been changed for security reasons, told the insider. “If we get caught, the Taliban will kill us.
Homosexuality is illegal in Afghanistan, but some homosexuals have said they have felt safe enough in recent years to participate in the “underground” gay scene, such as in karaoke bars.
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“It was fantastic and so much fun,” said gay man Rameen, 37, whose name has also been changed.
“Previously, I could meet a one-on-one partner without feeling any shame,” another Afghan gay man whose name has been changed told Insider Sayed.
But with the takeover of power by the Taliban, it is now expected that Sharia law will be enforced and that homosexuality will be punishable by death.
“It is not hyperbolic to say that homosexuals will be wiped out and exterminated by the Taliban, just as the Nazis did,” said gay activist Nemat Sadat, who now resides in the United States. “People are texting me saying this is my passport, this is all my information, please take me out of this country, i am going to die.”
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Homosexuals left in the country are now afraid to meet their partners, with Rameen saying he wants to be awakened “from this bad dream”.
“If the Taliban find out for us, they will sentence us to death,” Rameen told the outlet in tears. “I think we’ll have to end our relationship.”
Women in the country now also fear the Taliban takeover, as those who lived under it from 1996 to 2001 were not allowed to go to school or work. They could also only leave their homes in the presence of a man and had to wear blankets from head to toe.
Rule breakers were stoned and executed in public.
A recent statement signed by the United States and 20 other countries called on those in power in the country to “ensure” the protection of women and girls from “all forms of discrimination and abuse.” The Taliban have pledged to respect “women’s rights,” but reports from the country show women are already being abused.
Activist and former Afghan judge Najla Ayoubi told Sky News this week that a Taliban fighter allegedly set a woman on fire for “bad cooking”, while other young women were forced into sexual slavery.
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“There are so many young women who have been shipped in recent weeks to neighboring countries in coffins to be used as sex slaves,” she said.
“They are also forcing families to marry their young daughters to Taliban fighters. I don’t see where the promise is that they think women should go to work, when we are seeing all of these atrocities.”
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