The International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia, 17 May, serves as a reminder of the history of oppression and violence faced by queer individuals in many societies and countries, where their gender identity and sexual orientation have been pathologised and criminalised. It also commemorates the struggle and resistance of queer people to destigmatise and decriminalise their identities and orientations, fighting for equal rights.

In the Islamic Republic of Iran, the government not only enforces severe punishments, including execution, for queer individuals but also perpetuates a climate of hatred through state media and official rhetoric as part of its ideological stance.

Life under the Islamic Republic becomes even more difficult for queer individuals when they face various forms of oppression, violence, and rejection from society and often from their families as well. Queer Kurds, who experience intersecting oppressions based on gender, nationality, religion, class, and more, face pressure and violence not only from the government but also within the Kurdish community.

In recent years, the Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN) has repeatedly published news and reports about the situation of queer Kurds in Iran, highlighting the intense oppression and violence these individuals endure from both the government and society.

On this International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia, we once again honour the struggle and resistance of queer individuals worldwide, especially in Iran and Kurdistan, and we align ourselves with this effort to secure the rights of queer people and to end all forms of discrimination based on gender identity, sexual orientation, and other factors such as language, race, ethnicity, religion, class, disability, and more.