‘The Taliban has a kill list’ for the Afghan LGBT community, NGO says

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11/02/2021

Since the Taliban took control of Afghanistan at the end of August the persecution of the country’s LGBT+ community has ramped up, forcing many to live in hiding, fearing for their lives. “We now know for sure the Taliban has a ‘kill list’,” said the head of the Rainbow Railroad, a Canadian NGO helping under-threat Afghans to flee into exile. The situation for the LGBT+ community in Afghanistan has never been easy. Same-sex relations have always been taboo in the Muslim-majority country, where – even under the former Western-backed government – non-heterosexual relations were illegal and could lead to up to two years in prison. But since the Taliban came to power after the US military withdrawal on August 30, the situation has deteriorated rapidly. Although the militant group has not yet officially said how it plans to deal with acts of homosexuality, reports are increasingly suggesting that the Taliban is applying a strict interpretation of Sharia law, under which same-sex relations may be punishable by death.

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