Iran’s Use Of Electric Shocks On Gay Children Is Torture, UN Says

Emily Brown


Iran's Use Of Electric Shocks On Gay Children Is Torture, UN SaysPA Images

A report from the United Nations (UN) has revealed that the Islamic Republic of Iran has been imposing electric torture on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender children.

Released on Wednesday, February 10, the report addresses widespread human rights violations in Iran and sees Javaid Rehman, the UN Special Rapporteur for Iran, express concerns ‘at reports that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender children were subjected to electric shocks and the administration of hormones and strong psychoactive medications’.

Rehman wrote that these practices ‘amount to torture and cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, and violate the State’s obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child’.


The report, cited by The Jerusalem Post, continued:

The Special Rapporteur regrets that individuals who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender experience human rights violations and widespread discrimination.

Senior officials describe the community in hateful terms, including by labelling individuals as ‘subhuman’ and ‘diseased.’

The death penalty can be imposed for consensual sexual activity between members of the same sex in the Islamic Republic of Iran.

In Iran, where same-sex relationships are illegal, sex between men can be punishable with the death penalty while sex between women can be punishable by 100 lashes.

British LGBTQ+ and human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell likened the electric shock torture used by the Islamic Republic of Iran to ‘anti-LGBT+ medical treatments by the Nazis and other fascist regimes’, and noted that Rehman ‘rightly condemns these abuses as a form of torture and in violation of international human rights law’.

Speaking to The Jerusalem Post, Tatchell commented:

It is a shocking revelation that the Iranian regime subjects LGBT+ children to electric shocks, hormone treatments and psychoactive medications in a bid to ‘cure’ their sexual orientation & gender identity.

The UN Special Rapporteur has issued a damning report that confirms systemic persecution of women, LGBTs, human rights defenders, regime critics, trade unionists and ethnic and religious minorities.

Tatchell expressed his belief that Iran should be ‘expelled from international medical associations and conferences’ as a result of the torture.

According to a UN report cited by Pink News, the Committee on the Rights of the Child expressed concern in 2016 that the torture practices may be occurring ‘for the purpose of ‘curing” LGBTQ+ children.

The National Council of Resistance of Iran reports that the clerical regime in the country executed 27 individuals in January 2021, following hundreds of others in 2020.

If you’ve been affected by any of these issues and want to speak to someone in confidence, contact the LGBT Foundation on 0345 3 30 30 30, 10am–6pm Monday to Friday, or email [email protected]

Topics: News, Human Rights, Iran, LGBTQ+, Now, United Nations


The Jerusalem Post and 2 others
Emily Brown
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