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U.S. Embassy Condemns Attacks on “Emo” Youth in Iraq

We strongly condemn the recent violence and killings in Iraq by groups who appear to be targeting individuals based on their sexual orientation, gender identity, or personal expression.  These acts of intolerance have no place in democratic societies.

We are monitoring this situation closely on the ground and in Washington, and have expressed our concern to the Government of Iraq.

Additionally, in recent days, some of Iraq’s religious leaders and members of Parliament have denounced these attacks and taken steps to address this issue.  A representative for Grand Ayatollah Sistani has condemned this violence and the Chairperson of the Human Rights Committee within Iraq’s Parliament has condemned these actions as well. 

As Secretary of State Hilary Clinton said, “Like being a woman, like being a racial, religious, tribal, or ethnic minority, being LGBT does not make you less human… It is violation of human rights when people are beaten or killed because of their sexual orientation, or because they do not conform to cultural norms about how men and women should look or behave.”

At the State Department, we will continue to advance a comprehensive human rights agenda that includes the elimination of violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.