The Taliban government is reportedly keeping a “kill list” of gay people in Afghanistan, forcing many of them to hide.
Extremist interpretations of Sharia law by Islamist governments mean homosexuality is strictly forbidden and punishable with death, often in extremely brutal ways.
Now, the director of a LGBT+ human right group claims that the Taliban have created an entire list of gay people they want to kill.
Kimahliu Powell from the Rainbow Railroad, an international LGBT+ organisation based in Afghanistan, stated that “This is a really frightening time to be in Afghanistan,” France 24 was told.
He said, “We now know that the Taliban has an LBTQI+ person identification ‘kill list’ in circulation.”
The Taliban’s August retake of power made it particularly difficult for the LGBTQ+ community in Afghanistan.
Powell stated that the Taliban likely paid close attention in the weeks preceding the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan to the names of Afghan citizens who were evacuated by foreign rights groups.
Powell stated that there was a lot information sharing after the fall of Kabul. He also said that people who could not be evacuated were likely to have been added on to the Taliban’s “kill list” as their identities were revealed.
Powell claimed that the Taliban have been added to the kill list’ by ‘entrapment’ schemes, data leaks, and other means.
Kimahliu Powell (right), executive Director of the Rainbow Railroad, stated that he had seen evidence that Taliban had compiled a ‘kill-list’ of LGBT Afghans.
Powell stated that some people who reached out to him have shared with us how they received an email asking for their passport and information. “That’s how the information was leaked.”
Taliban rule has made LGBT people vulnerable to persecution and many are now facing increased levels of persecution.
The Rainbow Railroad was established in 2006 to help LGBT+ people who are in danger find refuge in safe homes. They then take them ‘by air or land’ to permanent safety in another country.
“I can already guarantee you, right now, that we will get more requests this year,” said a spokesperson.
After helping more than 100 people escape persecution during the horrific anti-gay purge in Chechnya, the group rose to international fame in 2017.
The Taliban’s August rise to power made it look particularly grim for the LGBTQ+ community of Afghanistan.
The Taliban interpretation of Sharia law prohibits homosexuality under any circumstances. (pictured: An alleged murderer is executed in Kabul, 1998)
Rainbow Railroad claims it has received over 700 requests from LGBT+ Afghans for assistance this year, after the Taliban took power.
Powell stated that 700 people have already requested help from the group this year, and that they know of 200 more who are in urgent need of evacuation.
Afghan laws already prohibited homosexuality. People who engaged in same-sex behaviour were sent to prison and often persecuted.
The Taliban’s extremist interpretations of Sharia Law make homosexuality strictly prohibited and punishable with death, often in extremely brutal ways.
Taliban ‘justice” recalls the worst atrocities committed by ISIS, which routinely executed gay men by throwing them from buildings and posting the footage online (pictured).
A man was accused of harassing and being beaten by Taliban members as punishment for his crime in Pakistan.
Fox News interviewed Tim Kennedy, a US Special Forces Sniper, about the West’s withdrawal. He had served in both Afghanistan (and Iraq) and said that he had seen Taliban fighters burn homosexuals alive, and throw them off rooftops.
Nancy Kelley, chief executive at Stonewall LGBT rights charity, stated: “For years LGBTQ+ Afghans have been subject to routine discrimination, abuse, and persecution, even by the state.
She told i News that she expected the situation to worsen with the Taliban at power.
Gul Rahim, a Taliban judge, was 38 when he spoke out about the removal of walls from gay men in central Afghanistan as a method of execution.
Judge Gul Rahim spoke truthfully about execution of gays and kidnappers, while cutting the hands off thieves (pictured: a Taliban prisoner is executed 2007).
In August, as the country returned Islamist rule, a Taliban gang raped and beat a gay man.
Two Taliban fighters lured the man out of hiding in Kabul’s capital by offering safe passage out to the country.
Instead, they beat the man and raped him as he arrived to see them. Then they took his father’s number so he could learn that his son was gay.