By Colin Stewart

Executions for gay sex occur in five countries  — by the government in Iran and Saudi Arabia and by uncontrolled militias in Iraq, Yemen and Somalia. Those are the best current estimates of the most extreme anti-gay brutality imposed worldwide.

Six nations with large Muslim populations have laws that clearly provide the death penalty for gay sex — Brunei, Iran, Mauritania, Nigeria (only in the Muslim-majority north), Saudi Arabia and Yemen.

But most of those governments don’t actually impose that death sentence.

However, executions by non-governmental militias are carried out in Iraq, Somalia and Yemen.

The following charts can help illuminate this complex situation. They are from a 2020 update on the current status of anti-gay laws by ILGA, the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association.

Below the two charts, more detailed information from Erasing 76 Crimes is listed for each country.

The first chart lists countries where “there is legal certainty” that the death penalty is an allowable punishment for consensual same-sex sexual acts.

By ILGA’s tally, six nations have laws providing the death penalty for consensual same-sex intimacy. Of those six, four have NOT carried out executions in recent years, but two of them — Iran and Saudi Arabia — may have, ILGA states.

The second chart lists five countries where “there is no full legal certainty” that the death penalty is an allowable punishment for consensual same-sex sexual acts. Of those five, four nations have NOT carried out such executions in recent years, while one of them — Somalia — may have, according to ILGA.

In addition to the 11 nations listed above, Erasing 76 Crimes adds Iraq, which tolerates executions by non-government militias.

EXECUTIONS

Here is this blog’s best-information-available list of countries/regions where executions for gay sex are carried out:

Nations with such laws on the books; executions have been carried out in the recent past:

This photo accompanied the Iran Human Rights report on three men who were hanged in Shiraz on Aug. 3.
These three men, hanged in Iran in 2014, may have been convicted and executed for gay sex. (Photo courtesy of Iran Human Rights)

Iran

Iran is No. 2 in the world for frequency of executions of any kind, behind China. Those may include executions for homosexual activity, although the facts are often unclear or misrepresented. (See, for example, “Bogus hanging in Iran, bogus tweets in Egypt” and “Series of public hangings in Iran, including 2 for sodomy.” When a man in Iran is hanged after being convicted of rape and sodomy, media coverage often wrongly describes the punishment as execution for homosexuality.)

The 2020 ILGA report cites only one example of executions for consensual homosexual activity in Iran since 2010:  In August 2014, reports indicated that two men were executed by hanging for allegedly having engaged in consensual same-sex sexual acts.

Eight other executions for sodomy are cited, without any indication whether the act was consensual or forced — one prisoner in 2017, four men reported “due to be executed” in 2012, and three men hanged in 2011.

Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia is No. 3 among the world’s most avid executioners, with 90+ people executed for a variety of crimes in 2014.

In a sense, Saudi Arabia has no anti-homosexuality law, but that’s only because it has no codified Penal Law at all. Instead it applies strict Islamic Sharia law in which “according to the Sura 7:80/81, sexual intercourse between men is outlawed,” ILGA reported in 2019.

The 2020 ILGA report cited multiple past executions related to homosexuality, but in each one the circumstances were unclear.

The report stated that “in the vast majority of known cases where Saudi Arabia has executed people on the grounds of sodomy, those accused had reportedly been sentenced with multiple additional criminal charges, such as terrorism, extremism, theft, murder, child abuse, and rape. It is often unclear how many (if any) of those offences are factual, and whether ‘sodomy’ is used as an aggravating circumstance or purposely conflated with other crimes by state authorities for arbitrary reasons.”

In 2000, six men were executed in Saudi Arabia, apparently for alleged homosexual activity. Amnesty International stated that they had been executed “partly, if not primarily, due to their sexual orientation.”

In 2019, Saudi Arabia executed 37 Shia Muslim men who were accused of “hating the Sunni sect, the State and its security forces. Of them, five were also accused of sodomy.

Nation with such a law on the books; executions have been carried out in the recent past by militias:

Yemen

In Yemen, as in Iraq, executions are carried out by militia rather than by the central government.

Yemeni law provides the death penalty for same-sex intercourse. But although Yemen is No. 7 in the world in frequency of executions overall, in recent years none has been for homosexual activity. As researchers for Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Board reported more than 10 years ago, “Information on whether such sentences have been carried out was not found.” More recently an article on Yemen’s gay community in The Tower magazine stated, “Traditionally, that death penalty is not enforced, but citizens have been imprisoned for their sexual orientation.”

However, in the midst of Yemen’s civil war, insurgent militia have reportedly executed people for homosexuality. These included:

  • In 2013, members of Al-Qaeda in Yemen were reportedly killing gay men as were militants of Ansar Al-Sharia.
  • Between 2012 and 2014, Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) reportedly killed at least 25 people on the basis of their sexual orientation.
  • AQAP reportedly murdered four gay men in the Yemeni capital of Aden, after AQAP took over parts of the city. (See the Erasing 76 Crimes article “Four murders of gay men in Yemen.”)

Nations with no such law on the books; executions are carried out by militias and others:

Iraq

The ILGA report of 2015 noted that “Iraq, although [the death penalty is] not in the civil code, clearly has judges and militias throughout the country that issue the death sentence for same-sex sexual behaviours.” For example: Iraq has become a death trap for gay men (September 2012)

Somalia

A gay teenager was reportedly stoned to death in 2013 after he was tried and convicted of sodomy by an Al-Shabaab judge. The 2020 ILGA report stated: “The veracity of this incident was briefly contested when it was discovered that the Somali Gay Community, who first reported the event on Facebook, had used photographs of unrelated instances of stoning from earlier years to communicate its message. However, other sources indicated that the execution indeed took place.”

In early 2017, al Shabaab executed a 20-year-old and a 15-year-old for “immoral and reprehensible” sexual acts. “The incident was confirmed by Sheikh Mohamed Abu Abdalla, a regional governor for Al-Shabaab,” according to the 2020 ILGA report.

NO EXECUTIONS DESPITE SHARIA

Afghanistan, Mauritania, Nigeria,Pakistan, Qatar, U.A.E. and Brunei

The BBC reported in 2007, about Nigeria, “More than a dozen Nigerian Muslims have been sentenced to death by stoning and for sexual offences ranging from adultery and homosexuality. But none of these death sentences has actually been carried out as they were either thrown out on appeal or commuted to prison terms as a result of pressure from human rights groups.”

ILGA reported, “Several Northern Nigerian states have adopted Islamic Sharia laws, criminalising sexual activities between persons of the same sex. The maximum penalty for such acts between men is death penalty, while the maximum penalty for such acts between women is a whipping and/or imprisonment.” No specific executions cited.

The ILGA report of 2017 summarized: “it would be valid to say that the death penalty is ‘allowed’, or evidence of its existence, occurs [because of] its potential application by Shari’a courts in Pakistan, Afghanistan, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Mauritania, … [but] these States have less severe penalties encoded in their penal laws, and there appears to be no data to suggest the death penalty has been implemented in those States for consensual same-sex sexual acts between adults and in private.”

A U.S. Department of State cable from 2009, released by WikiLeaks in 2011, indicated that Mauritania has never imposed the death penalty for homosexual activity or any other crime.

In April 2019, Brunei adopted a version of sharia law that provides for death by stoning for consensual same-sex sexual activity for both men and women. But in May 2019, under international pressure, the Sultan of Brunei announced that a common-law moratorium on executions would be extended to cover that sharia law.

NO LONGER ON THE LIST

Sudan

In July 2020, Sudan dropped the death penalty as a punishment for homosexuality. At the time, there had been no recent reports of executions for same-sex intimacy.

ISIS

In the past, the Islamic State, also known as ISIS, ISIL and Daesh, was included on the list of governments imposing the death penalty for gay sex. At its height, ISIS repeatedly executed men accused of homosexuality. For example, from 2015: ‘Islamic State’ has reported 15 LGBTI executions. Now, after years of gradually successful armed struggle against it, ISIS remains an international pariah, but no longer deserves to be considered a de facto nation.

For more information:

49 Comments

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  1. Most of the countries that have harsh penalties for homosexuals are Islamic. Why do many homosexuals in first world countries criticize minor laws in the West while seeming to side with Muslims as both being persecuted?

    • For those that believe and defend the bible as the word of god……Read Leviticus 20:13 & 18:22.

      These nations that kill faggots are just following what the bible says.

      • “Just following what the Bible says” isn’t what’s going on. What’s going on is choosing a handful of Bible verses and ignoring others. I doubt that you follow all the exotic rules for the ancient Israelites that are listed in Leviticus. If you were to take Leviticus seriously as applying to modern Christians, you might end up asking questions such as these:

        When someone tries to defend the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind him that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination. End of debate.

        I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some of the specific laws and how to best follow them.

        I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair price for her?

        Lev. 25:44 states that I may indeed possess slaves, both male and female, provided they are purchased from neighboring nations. A friend of mine claims that this applies to Mexicans, but not Canadians. Can you clarify? Why can’t I own Canadians?

        I have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself?

        A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an abomination (Lev 11:10), it is a lesser abomination than homosexuality. I don’t agree. Can you settle this?

        Most of my male friends get their hair trimmed, including the hair around their temples, even though this is expressly forbidden by Lev 19:27. How should they die?

        I know from Lev 11:6-8 that touching the skin of a dead pig makes me unclean, but may I still play football if I wear gloves?

        My uncle has a farm. He violates Lev 19:19 by planting two different crops in the same field, as does his wife by wearing garments made of two different kinds of thread (cotton/polyester blend). He also tends to curse and blaspheme a lot. Is it really necessary that we go to all the trouble of getting the whole town together to stone them? (Lev 24:10-16) Couldn’t we just burn them to death at a private family affair like we do with people who sleep with their in-laws? (Lev. 20:14)

    • I wrote it. I added realized that WordPress “pages,” as opposed to “posts,” don’t automatically get a byline.

      I just added my byline to it, BTW.

      — Colin Stewart, editor/publisher of this blog

    • This is very common knowledge that needs not to be cited just like saying Hitler had anti Jewish laws, John Booth shot Lincoln let alone Saudi Arabia is not getting along with Iran

      • Only gays are normal and Judaism is the only non-blasphemous religion. The Jewish God is God and if He had wanted men and women to be together, then He would have made us the same.

        And the Bible gives gays permission to bash bigots like you to death:

        “And a man who injures his countryman – as he has done, so it shall be done to him [namely,] fracture for fracture, eye for eye, tooth for tooth. Just as he has injured a person, so it shall be done to him.” (Lev. 24:19–21)

        • No rebel gays have that permission.
          “Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image.” (Gen. 9:6)

          IN HIS OWN IMAGE. See the bigger picture? No homos are representing God’s image.

      • For all those against the death penalty for fags, I suggest that they open up their Bible to Leviticus 18:22, Leviticus 20:13, and Romans 1:26-27. God very clearly states what should be done to Sodomites in those 3 passages.

        • “And a man who injures his countryman – as he has done, so it shall be done to him [namely,] fracture for fracture, eye for eye, tooth for tooth. Just as he has injured a person, so it shall be done to him.” (Lev. 24:19–21)

          Tl;dr: Die, breeder, die!

        • Leviticus 19:19 19 “‘Keep my decrees.
          “‘Do not mate different kinds of animals.
          “‘Do not plant your field with two kinds of seed.
          “‘Do not wear clothing woven of two kinds of material.

          Are you wearing a blended fabric, such as polycotton? HYPOCRITE! We might just get one of the blokes to lift your shirt and check.

        • Fortunately, in North America we do not use mythology to establish law. So that quaint book of mythologies called the Bible is not relevant as to what should and should not be law in the U.S or elsewhere. Nor is any other religious text. People who want to govern their own lives by mythology are free to do so. But keep your mythologies out of other peoples’ lives.

          • Let me guess… You and your ancestors were manufactured from North America’s state of the art facilities. And there you are – fresh from the oven. For the likes of you, I would think you really made it through the evolution of man and stopped midway -and that’s completely understandable if you don’t read the Bible.

        • “God very clearly states” … who cares. God is an oppressor. If Satan hadn’t given us freedom of choice you wouldn’t even be able to be trolling on the internet because humankind would still be God’s spineless puppets.

        • “And a man who injures his countryman – as he has done, so it shall be done to him [namely,] fracture for fracture, eye for eye, tooth for tooth. Just as he has injured a person, so it shall be done to him.” (Lev. 24:19–21)

      • Don’t even try to say that faggotry is genetic! Saying such a thing is akin to saying that there’s a rape gene, a murder gene, a theft gene, a child molesting gene, ad nauseum! Let’s unlock all the jail doors and let all the inmates out! They’re all suffering from a bad gene!

        • “And a man who injures his countryman – as he has done, so it shall be done to him [namely,] fracture for fracture, eye for eye, tooth for tooth. Just as he has injured a person, so it shall be done to him.” (Lev. 24:19–21)

  2. Good for all of u countries who are against gay and lesbian lifestyles thank God for that after all it is a sin against God!- he hates all sin and whats an abomination!- its perverted!- nasty!! And disgusting! He is against it and wants his people to be against it too! Deal with it! Whether u like it or not its still wrong!!!! Tead why God hates this kind of behavior! In genesis 19!!! If u still support it that makes u gay too and corrupt like them!!! Beware! Jesus said to – go! And sin no more!- lest worse thing happens to u! In john chapter5:14!!!luke 13:3-5! Repent!- or u will perish! Its up to u!to be lost- or saved!- and being gay is being lost! U will not go to heaven like that! Matthew 5:20! Peace!

    • The Bible gives gays permission to lynch your homophobic ass:

      “And a man who injures his countryman – as he has done, so it shall be done to him [namely,] fracture for fracture, eye for eye, tooth for tooth. Just as he has injured a person, so it shall be done to him.” (Lev. 24:19–21)

      • In the New Testament, the Lex Talionis is no longer necessary. Christ’s death on the cross ended the requirement for blood recompense and blood sacrifice. The sacrifice of Jesus, the Lamb of God. His death made it unnecessary to execute murderers to maintain human dignity and value because the crucifixion forever established human value. Hebrews 9:14 says, “How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God!”

    • I’m a Bible believing person who loves God not stupid silly satan. When God returns he’ll will destroy all gays and lesbians for following satan and not adhering to God’s law. Hallelujah! In the meanwhile we will just have to pray they change or avoid them until Jesus returns.

  3. Is being a pervert or rapist or a child molester ok?!- no!- neither is being a homo!- or lesbian- or transvestite! Theyre all in the same category!- there is nothing right about it at all! Its a wicked an evil thing to do! Remember that! God said so i believe it! And all who are gay are worthy of death!- God said that too! If u disagree u are going against God! Thats a sin too!- of disobedience!im so proud to be- anti gay!!! Thats doing whats right!i dont care if u-dont agree! Thats the truth!

  4. Read all about it the truth from the word of God!- against this corruption in leviticus chapter 18-20!deuteronomy chapter 22:5! God said about crossdressing its an abomination! Wake up world!

  5. @thepurplequeenblog
    You’re talking about murder in the name of your fantasy god. You can get off the moral bandwagon. You can’t even spell which is typical. You should spend your time improving yourself instead of bringing others down in your selfish sickness. I wish we had laws against you people in my country with state-sponsored murder as a “solution”.

    • Whoever dont like me preaching the word of God thats the truth!- i dont care! Too bad for u!- not me!- so for those who dont like it U are lost and ignorant!- so sad!- but for those who like it!- God bless u! And the more u gay losers hate me!- the more God blesses me! For doing whats right!- unlike u!- deal with that!- im proud to be anti gay!- just like him!- by the way if u support gays u are sinning against God too!- and God will punish u for that! And ill still be blessed!- not u!- bye!

      • Funny… there was a time you could take all your saying and replace it with blacks..
        This idiots that keep the hate train going..

      • People are always quoting the Bible on these issues. However there are people who do not believe in the Bible. So why do you impose your religious beliefs upon others who do not subscribe to such believes. Jesus came into the world to teach the love of God to the world and such things as the murdering of innocent human beings, because of their sexual orientation is against God’s love and plain out murder, period. The gay love of Jonathan and David Son of Jesse 1 Samuel 18.1-4

      • To those of you who quote the bible with all of this. You are the ignorant ones, do you really know that those are gods words and not the words of some idiot who wants to control? I believe in god and carry him with me everyday but what i don’t do is read from a book that was wrote be some unknown and believe in it. I also don’t believe that God put us here to judge, not our job it’s his. So here’s to all the gays and lesbians out there. You have my vote, I adore and honor all of you. In my eyes you are the strength that God wants us all to have. No shame in being gay. I don’t think anybody should die or be punished for it either. To those of you that push God, keep going with your cult feelings, thoughts and judgments. God will punish you for hating the gays and lesbians. We are all his children and he loves us all equally. One more thing for you people of God, the gays don’t hate you so why hate them. You go against everything God stands for when you do. You are all hypocrites preach God’s word then hate and kill. Stupid stupid stupid

  6. Just look at the barbaric countries who hate Gays — and look at the countries who embrace Gay– I know where I want to live– If the Gay hater wants to alien with Stalin – Nazis – Pol Pot – and other hideous vile beasts, then he is to be pitied indeed: Let all liberated good folk vote YES in Australia for Gay-marriage: And join the 45 countries who embrace freedom to love who one wishes to love.

  7. I am on the opposing side in that I am against homosexuality HOWEVER I am impressed with elements in your article because they were true. Your comments about Iran were impressive as I was angry about the gross misrepresentation of Iran . I recall the Amnesty debacle where they claimed Iran had executed a gay couple who were only teenagers to predictable outrage from the western countries. Then it transpired that they had homosexually raped and murdered an innocent child. To say I was surprised and impressed to see an admission of this type of error in a pro-homosexual article was an understatement. BUT the reason that I am on the opposing side is that the argument by design is a powerful argument both for the existence of God and the incorrectness of homosexuality. The reason that sex is pleasurable (i.e. the why of it) is to incentivise reproduction. The how of it is that there are nerve endings on the penis and clitoris that when stimulated produce pleasure. When we go too deeply into the Hows without considering the Why’s we can see how homosexuals/lesbians can have pleasure but don’t use the same level of analysis on the why questions which would lead us to realize it is wrong, It is further complicated by carnal desire (lust) – of course adultery etc are also wrong and thus we must not overstep the bounds and stay within what God commands. Regarding the death penalty for it in the Quran it is not there although according to Sharia (My understanding) is that it is only applied where the homosexuality is witnessed by 4 people so in practice this would only happen in a public gay orgy (which I’d hope you’d agree is undesirable) or where there is an accusation of child molestation or murder. Virtually no one on the pro -homosexual side raises these issues so I am impressed when they do. That doesn’t however detract from my opposition to homosexual marriage because the child is deprived (intentionally) of at least one of his/her natural parents which simply is not fair. Nor is it fair that primary age children should be taught about families with 2 mums / 2 dads etc because it is actually a state -sponsored lie of convenience since in reality every child is produced by a Mum and a Dad and regardless this brainwashing of primary aged children is both immoral and inappropriate, I really hope that the British and others see sense and realize their brainwashing of their own children is just plain wrong

    • Thank you for recognizing our truth-telling about Iran.
      No thank you for your unhelpful discussion of your religiously based support for the death penalty for homosexual activity. That’s what’s at issue here, not whether children are being properly educated, not even whether a person whom God created as homosexual should be warned not to “overstep the bounds” by loving a person of the same sex. You tell us not to worry about a death-penalty law because it would rarely be implemented, as if drinking poison would be a good idea if it only kills people occasionally. Already, the hateful effects of the law are evident in Brunei, as The Guardian reports: https://76crimes.com/2019/04/08/brunei-law-spurs-anti-gay-violence-boosts-fears/

  8. IM Jewish and gay. This is both our country so don’t be such a fascist pig. There is no reason one of us should have to leave and you stay. Why don’t you. Are everyone you don’t like go away little baby?

  9. You disgust me. They’re talking about hanging and stoning gay people and you’re all for it. Grow up. Xtians took the Jewish religion and perverted it. Y’all worship three gods and an idol, beat up on gay people instead of judging others favorably… on and On w the perversion of our faith oh and by the waythey’d kill you too in Iran

  10. How can a man have sexual attraction for another man is disgusting and unnatural.

    It’s disappointing how the West (especially the USA) defends these despicable pervert faggots and give them not only rights but they celebrate them!

    Some faggot defenders say that many animal species engage in homosexual behavior. Well pigs and flies eat shit. Does that mean it’s o.k. and acceptable to eat shit?

    I applaud these nations that kill these perverted, degenerate faggots. The bible God approves of killing faggots. Read
    Leviticus 20:13,
    18:22;
    1 Corinthians 6: 9, 10.
    Roman’s. 1:24-27.

    God save us from disgusting, despicable, faggots, lesbos, trannies and child molesters.

  11. 90% of homosexuals (when asked in confidential surveys) admit that they have sodomized an underaged boy at some point in their lives.We used to execute rapists up until 1963,in the United States. The Catholic church protects convicted pedophiles so they can rape again. All sodomy is rape. Rapists should be executed – sodomizes rape so they should be executed as rapists that harm others. Doesn’t matter if a sodomite rapes a woman or a man, they should be executed for the harm they do. No one in their right mind would think twice about shooting a man trying to sodomize a woman. Why should we think twice about shooting a man trying to sodomize a man ? The gay panic defense is VERY REAL. Every man should lawfully be able to shoot a homosexual.

    News stories:
    Feb 10, 2016 — A jury of seven Marine officers tonight found a 27-year-old military policeman guilty of kidnaping, raping, sodomizing and attempting to murder a woman on the Marine Corps base here last spring

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