Warning: Some of the images below are extremely graphic and may not be safe for work.
Every now and then I come across a story that shakes me to my core and this is one of those stories. Iran grabbed national headlines in 2005 when two young men accused of having sex with a young boy were convicted and hanged in a public square and more recently when Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad declared that gays didn't exist in his country during a speech at Columbia University in New York. Human rights officials believe the two boys were executed because they were involved in a homosexual relationship which is punishable by death in Iran.
Fast forward to the present. A 19 year old openly gay Iranian teenager named "Mehdi" faces possible execution if authorities force him to return to Iran after fleeing to the U.K. and the Netherlands to escape the inhumane treatment of those who are homosexual or perceived to be in his native country of Iran.
Mehdi was studying English in Britain, when he says he learned his boyfriend back in Tehran had been arrested, charged with sodomy and hanged in 2006. But before the boyfriend was killed, Mehdi says, authorities forced his partner to name past lovers.
He now sits in a Dutch detention center, where he waits for a judge to decide whether to grant him asylum, or carry out a British extradition request to send him to the U.K. The British Home Office says it does not believe that homosexuals in Iran are routinely persecuted purely because of their sexuality.
Medhi's uncle who has lived in England for over 30 years spoke under anonymity with CNN and said he believed if Medhi is returned to Britain, then deported to Iran, whomever at the Home Office signs his deportation papers, signs his nephew’s death sentence. The uncle fears for his nephew’s safety if he’s deported.
This story is unbelievable. I don't understand how any civilized country could treat their citizens this way because of their sexual orientation. What baffles me is the silence from our President who sent our country into a senseless war in order to create "peace and democracy" in the middle east and he turns a blind eye to these horrific hate crimes committed by the Iranian government.
You have to see the video here to grasp the seriousness of this issue.