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Gay Man In Iran Reportedly Killed By His Own Family

Alireza Monfared

A 20-year-old Iranian man has reportedly been killed -- perhaps beheaded -- by family members in the country's southwest because of his sexual orientation.

Reports from Iran say Alireza Monfared was killed by his brother and cousins earlier this month after they discovered that he had been exempted from military service due to his homosexuality.

Some reports suggested he had been beheaded.

Up to three people were said to have been arrested in connection with the killing, which reportedly took place on May 4 near Ahvaz, the capital of Khuzestan Province.

Monfared’s partner, Aghil Abyat, told RFE/RL that Monfared had been due to travel to Turkey on May 8 to join him.

The BBC reported it had received audio recordings of Monfared saying he was in danger from family members and that he was planning to flee Iran.

Homosexuality is punishable by death in Iran, where sexual minorities have to hide their orientation.

Earlier this year, the UN’s special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran expressed concern over reports that the country has subjected lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) children to “torture and cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment.”

With reporting by Yahoo! News and the BBC