Gunshots fired as 30 men arrested in Iran accused of being gay

Iran has arrested more than 30 men accused of being gay at a party, it has been reported.

According to reports, dozens of men were arrested at a private party in the Esfahan province.

Iranian Railroad for Queer Refugees, a Canadian NGO, reported that the men were arrested last week accused of being gay.

Members of Iran's parliamentary Basij police

“IRQR received several reports in the last few days and we were able to confirm that police attacked guests and physically beat them. Police detained the men, ages 16 to 30, 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,” the website of Iranian Railroad reads.

The party was raided in the Bahadoran district, according to the NGO, and gunshots were fired as the raids took place.

The Basij is a paramilitary force used in Iran to combat dissidents.

The NGO added: “After a few days, all the families were informed by Basij that their sons were arrested for sodomy.

“A special prosecutor 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.”

German Green Party MP Volker Beck on Thursday said because Iran’s “persecution and policy of annihilation against homosexuals makes the Iranian regime an enemy of human rights. Such a country cannot be a partner of our community of values.”

Under Iranian Islamic law, gay men should be put to death.

The IRQR adds: “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.”

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Wednesday criticised human rights violations by Iran, as well as nuclear aspirations.

A gay teen was executed in Iran in 2016.

A gay Iranian man earlier this year took to Facebook to express fear that he will not be allowed to re-enter the US when he returns from his gay cruise holiday.

May Sam wrote on Facebook as President Donald Trump signed an executive order to ban Muslim immigrants from high risk countries.