Qatar: Security Forces Arrest, Abuse LGBT People

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10/24/2022

Qatar Preventive Security Department forces have arbitrarily arrested lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people and subjected them to ill-treatment in detention, Human Rights Watch said today. LGBT people interviewed said that their mistreatment took place as recently as September 2022, as Qatar prepared to host the 2022 FIFA Men’s World Cup in November and even as the government came under intense scrutiny for its treatment of LGBT people. Human Rights Watch documented six cases of severe and repeated beatings and five cases of sexual harassment in police custody between 2019 and 2022. Security forces arrested people in public places based solely on their gender expression and unlawfully searched their phones. As a requirement for their release, security forces mandated that transgender women detainees attend conversion therapy sessions at a government-sponsored “behavioral healthcare” center. “While Qatar prepares to host the World Cup, security forces are detaining and abusing LGBT people simply for who they are, apparently confident that the security force abuses will go unreported and unchecked,” said Rasha Younes, LGBT rights researcher at Human Rights Watch. “Qatari authorities need to end impunity for violence against LGBT people. The world is watching.”

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