Middle East / North Africa

Jan. 6 trial in Tunisia for being gay on the street

In Tunisia, Sousse is located about 150 kilometers (100 miles) south of Tunis. (Map courtesy of brittanica.com)

In Tunisia, Sousse is located about 150 kilometers (100 miles) south of Tunis. (Map courtesy of brittanica.com)

The trial of two Tunisian youths accused of homosexuality has been set for January 6,  L’Express reports.

Achref, a 20-year-old student, said he was arrested on Dec. 7 with Sabri, 22, while the two were on a street in downtown Sousse.

A policeman asked him, “You were doing something with your boyfriend, were you not? You bring a curse on the country.”

Under Tunisian law, same-sex intercourse is punishable by up to three years in prison. Achref implied that the two young men were arrested on the basis of their perceived sexual orientation, not for their actions.

The young men were taken to the police station, then “slapped, insulted and forced to sign [a statement],” he said.

They were released pending their trial.

Achref was reported as saying that he was subjected to an anal test, which is different from what was reported in the Dec. 9 article “2 arrests in Tunisia; protests block anal tests.”

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