On April 20, 2017 Iranian Railroad for Queer Refugees reported: Last Thursday around 8:30 pm, Esfahan’s police raided a private party in Bahadoran, the Garden region of Esfahan. After firing several gun shots, they arrested more than 30 men apparently between the ages of 16 and 30 for being homosexual.
IRQR received several reports in last few days and were able to confirm that police attacked guests and physically beat them. Police detained them all at the Basij (Revolutionary Guard Militia) Station and then transferred them to Esfahan’s Dastgerd Prison. A few people managed to escape and we received reports that there were several heterosexual individuals among those arrested.After a few days, all the families were informed by Basij that their sons were arrested for Sodomy. A special persecutor has been assigned to their cases and they were charged with sodomy, drinking alcohol, and using psychedelic drugs. It was reported that prisoners will be sent to Esfahan’s Medical Jurisprudence department for anal examination in order to provide evidence of homosexual acts to the court.
According to the Islamic Punishment Code in Iran, homosexuality is punishable by death and a judge is able to sentence them based on valid evidence such as a medical report.
This unfortunate event has created chaos among the LGBT community in Esfahan since prisoners were forced to write down full names of all their LGBT friends and acquaintances.IRQR is deeply concerned about this situation since Iran has a well-documented history of persecuting homosexuals.