Gay-rights activists in Lebanon are calling on the authorities to stop performing anal examinations on men suspected of having "sexual intercourse contrary to nature". It started with a raid by police on a cinema in one of the poorest districts of Beirut, following claims on a television show that it was a "gay house". Thirty-six people were arrested. All of them were subjected to an examination by a doctor at a police station.
Coming Out in Lebanon
Spike in 'chemsex' among Lebanon's LGBT+ community, broken by Beirut blast | Reuters
Help us continue to fight human rights abuses. Please give now to support our work. Beirut — Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender LGBT people and their rights in Lebanon are part and parcel of the nationwide protests that began on October 17, , Human Rights Watch said today in a web feature. By taking their struggle to the streets, through chants, graffiti, and public discussions, LGBT people have moved demands of their rights from the margins to mainstream discourse in a country where same-sex relations are punishable by up to one year in prison and transgender people face systemic discrimination. Beirut for me was a city of caution and fear. General Security also indefinitely denied non-Lebanese LGBT activists who attended the conference permission to re-enter the country.
LGBT rights in Lebanon
Throughout the Arab world, gay, lesbian and transgender people face formidable obstacles to living a life of openness and acceptance in conservative societies. Although Jordan decriminalized same-sex behavior in , the gay community remains marginalized. In Saudi Arabia, homosexuality can be punished by flogging or death. If there is one exception, it has been Lebanon.
Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer LGBTQ persons living in Lebanon may face difficulties not experienced by non- LGBT residents, though they are considerably more free than in other parts of the Arab world. Various courts have ruled that Article of the Lebanese Penal Code, which prohibits having sexual relations that "contradict the laws of nature", should not be used to arrest LGBT people. Article of the Lebanese Penal Code prohibits having sexual relations that are "contradicting the laws of nature", which is punishable by up to a year in prison. As a practical matter, enforcement of the law had been varied and often occurred through occasional police arrests. In , the police broke into a woman's house after her mother claimed that her daughter had stolen some money and jewelry.