Middle East / North Africa

100s arrested in Kuwait vice raids, including 20 LGBTs

Kuwait location on Persian Gulf

Kuwait location on Persian Gulf

Four gay men and two transgender women were among 149 people arrested in Kuwait over the weekend on charges of immoral behavior, Pink News reported.

Those raids brought the reported total number of vice arrests to more than 230, including about 20 LGBT people.

The weekend’s arrests were part of a police crackdown on “suspected prostitution dens,” according to the Emirates 24/7 news website. It reported that “several gays and tomboys have been locked up pending trial.”

Pink News quoted a transgender Kuwaiti activist who said, “They call it ‘prostitution places’ but in fact these were private parties in homes and apartments. … It’s just drinking and partying maybe a bit more but not prostitution.” She said in addition:

Ever since the Islamists have won a majority in the Kuwaiti Parliament last February such campaigns have intensified. She reported that increasing number of check points have been put in place, targeting a wide range of behaviour and people, including transgender people, gays, lesbians, people ‘drinking alcohol, couples, parties, and any [in]appropriate kind of clothing’.

However, LGBT people are singled out in particular, she said. She reported that on Sunday a transgender woman was caught, beaten and the arrested at a checkpoint.

On the previous weekend, Pink News reported, “a total of 40 people were arrested in similar raids, of which four were described as ‘Boyat,’ an Arabic term referring to tomboys which may also refer to lesbians, who were detained and are awaiting prosecution. On the 29 April, seven gay men were arrested for wearing ‘indecent clothing’ while spending time at the beach. Ten days earlier, 44 people were arrested, of whom, 4 were gay and 5 merely labelled as ‘cross-dressers.’ ”

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3 thoughts on “100s arrested in Kuwait vice raids, including 20 LGBTs

  1. Pingback: Transgender man arrested in Kuwait crackdown | 76 CRIMES

  2. Pingback: Kuwait: 215 arrested ‘for being gay’? Not quite | 76 CRIMES

  3. Pingback: Kuwait police raid ‘gay’ party, arrest 32 | 76 CRIMES

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