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Former Iran President Rouhani aide 'apologises' for supporting LGBTQ families Open in fullscreen

The New Arab

Former Iran President Rouhani aide 'apologises' for supporting LGBTQ families

Shahindokht apologised for "carelessly republishing" a poster showing families of various sexual identities [Getty]

Date of publication: 18 May, 2020

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According the Islamic Penal Code, any action which "contributes to the spread of homosexuality" is punishable by up to ten years in prison.

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Iran, LGBTQ
A former aide to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani was forced to delete a social media post featuring a graphic showing families of various sexual identities to mark the UN's "International Day of Families" after hardliners accused her of "promoting homosexuality".

The caption to the poster shared by Shahindokht Molaverdi to her Telegram reads in Persian: "The structure of family has changed in the past few decades but the United Nations still considers it as the main division of society"

It adds: "This year, amid the spread of the coronavirus, the focus is on investing in social policies which protect vulnerable households during times of crisis".

Molaverdi was subsequently forced to remove the post showing graphics of LGBTQ couples with their children and issued an apology for "careless republishing", Radio Farda report.

It comes after ultraconservative critics blasted her for allegedly "supporting homosexuality" through the tweet.

One hardliner who lashed out on Twitter wrote: "I hope this is not true [*6]....Homosexual propoganda on Shahindokht Molaverdi's official channel".

A harsher response came from Alireza Zakani, a conservative lawmaker from Tehran, who has recently been elected for the holy city of Qom.

He called on President Rouhani to condemn "such a decay of morals or lack of understanding of what constitutes a family at the bare minimum".

Read more: The threat posed by queer Muslims

The public criticism could result in serious consequences for Molaverdi if legal action is taken against for the tweet.

According the Islamic Penal Code, any action which contributes to the spread of homosexuality is punishable by up to ten years in prison, according to state run Mashreq News.

Homosexual acts are punishable by death.

Molaverdi served as vice president of women's and family affairs in the Islamic Republic from 2013-2017, before resigning from her post as special assistant for citizenship rights in the Rouhani administration in 2018.


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