10 men arrested in Tanzania for ‘being gay’

Pongwe Beach in Zanzibar, where ten men were arrested for being gay.

Ten men have reportedly been arrested in Tanzania, after police were tipped off about a same-sex wedding ceremony.

Police raided the event at Pongwe Beach on the Tanzanian island of Zanzibar and detained the men on Saturday night (November 3), according to Amnesty International.

Six other people fled the scene.

Paul Makonda announced an anti-LGBT+ crackdown in Tanzania.

Paul Makonda announced the creation of a task force to hunt down gay people. (Dizzim Online/youtube)

The ten men are being held at Chakwal police station in Unguja. No charges have been made against them.

“This must not be allowed to happen—these men must be released immediately.”

LGBT+ people can face up to life imprisonment in Tanzania if convicted of having gay sex. Gay marriage is also illegal in the country.

Arrested for sitting ‘two by two’

According to Amnesty International, the men were detained for allegedly carrying out a gay marriage, with police claiming that they found the men sitting in pairs “two by two.”

Seif Magango, Amnesty International’s east Africa deputy director, called for Tanzanian authorities to release the men.

“This is a shocking blow following the Tanzanian government’s assurance that no-one would be targeted and arrested because of their actual or perceived sexual orientation and gender identity,” the deputy director said.

“This appalling attack on Tanzanian people simply exercising their human rights shows the danger of inflammatory and discriminatory rhetoric at senior levels of government.”

Magango said Amnesty International now feared that the men could be subjected to forced anal examinations.

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