The Trump administration will soon launch an initiative aiming to eliminate laws worldwide that criminalize homosexual activity.
Although being gay or having gay sexual contact is punishable in more than one-third of the world’s countries, human rights violations in
‘There are 71 countries that criminalize homosexuality and eight that will put you to death for being gay,’ Richard Grenell, the U.S. ambassador to
‘This is outrageous. The West must use its collective leverage to end this abuse.’
Grenell is the Trump administration’s most high-profile openly gay official.
Separately, a White House official told DailyMail.com that President Donald Trump deserves credit for green-lighting an effort that will ruffle feathers abroad.
President Donald Trump’s administration will soon launch an effort to put human-rights pressure on the 71 nations, mostly in Africa and Asia, where it’s a crime to be gay, lesbian or bisexual
The Islamic Republic of Iran is the administration’s main focus but 70 other nations also criminalize gay sexual activity; Iran and seven others apply the death penalty for the ‘offense’
U.S. Ambassador to Germany Ric Grenell is the Trump administration’s most visible openly gay official, and he wants the West to pressure nations where it’s a crime to be homosexual
‘This is one of the most important things any president has done for LGBT rights in the history of America, period. Every country should move in America’s direction on that,’ the official said, declining to speak on the record but confirming that Iran was a primary focus of the initiative.
Another official organizing the effort told
Iran’s Sharia-law death penalty has become particularly vexing for Grenell.
A British government document released by WikiLeaks indicates that the UK believes Iran has executed ‘between 4,000 and 6,000 gays and lesbians’ since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
The Islamist nation publicly hanged a 31-year-old man last month for violating a law against same-sex intercourse.
Saudi Arabia also has ‘morality codes,’ enforced by Sharia courts, that specifically criminalize homosexual contact.
THE COUNTRIES WHERE BEING GAY IS A CRIME
According to the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association, sex acts between homosexuals are considered crimes in about 70 countries.
Twenty-seven of the nations have laws that apply only to gay men.
Six countries have imposed the death penalty on people for violating anti-gay ‘morality’ laws. They are in boldface type in the lists below.
In addition, ISIS-held territories in Iraq and Syria, part of the terrorist group’s self-proclaimed ‘caliphate,’ executed gays.
Algeria, Angola, Botswana, Comoros, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Liberia, Libya, Malawi, Mauritania, Mauritius, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei Darussalam, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Lebanon, Malaysia, Maldives, Myanmar, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Syria, Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, Yemen
Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Countries in Oceania
Kiribati, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu
Saudi Arabia is one nation that has executed man for being gay, applying ‘morality’ laws; the Trump administration’s strategic alliance with the kingdom and its crown prince, Mohammed Bin Salman, could make it difficult to apply pressure; the prince has maintained his U.S. ties despite being implicated in the grisly death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi last year
Grenell lives at the U.S. embassy in Berlin with his husband Matt Lashey, a former Broadway actor
It’s unclear how the Trump administration will distinguish between Iran, a country it is trying to isolate, and Saudi Arabia, whose strategic importance to the White House is so significant that the crown prince’s role in the grisly death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi last year has not drawn sanctions or a significant rebuke.
Morocco, too, could be problematic. The North African nation’s trade ties with the U.S. stand as America’s longest such unbroken relationship. And the two countries share counterterrorism information focused on Islamist groups in Mali, Algeria and Libya.
Grenell, 52, has focused laregely on Iran.
He said this month that ‘Iran’s horrific actions are on par with the brutality and savagery regularly demonstrated by ISIS,’ the once-powerful Islamic terrorist army.
He told the
Grenell took aim at Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif on Tuesday, mocking him on Twitter for calling himself a ‘professor of human rights’
Grenell may have ruffled feathers in his host country on Tuesday by posting, without commentary, a photo of Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and Germany’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Heiko Maas, in a cheerful grip-and-grin
That appears to be the strategy the State Department is contemplating, although his own .
Grenell tweeted a photo on Tuesday of Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and Germany’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Heiko Maas. The two men were photographed shaking hands and smiling.
In another tweet, he commented on a video of Zarif describing himself as a ‘human rights professor.’
‘A professor who is helping to hang gay students?’ he responded. ‘[C]riminalizing homosexuality is in direct violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Grenell added the hashtag ‘#totalBS.’