Saudi Arabia has sentenced a man to three years in prison and 450 lashes for attempting to arrange to meet another man using Twitter for “the practise of homosexuality.”
Arabic newspaper Al-Watan said that “the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice…tracked down the owner of the account” of the man who was trying to arrange sex with another man.
The man’s phone, which contained pornographic images, was also confiscated.
Abdulla, the chair of the United Arab Emirates LGBT group said:
“It is infuriating and disheartening when a country that was elected not too long ago to become a member of the United Nations Human Rights Council arrogantly and nonchalantly violates its core principles and harms its own citizens. Not only is the fundamental human right for privacy breached but the entrapment and sentence also breaches several human rights charters."
Abdulla continued that “if the man survives this ordeal he will find himself an outcast and will be in danger for life after he completes this harsh sentence.”
Saudi Arabia is known for its harsh anti-hay laws. In 2011, Ali Ahmed Asseri, a gay former Saudi diplomat living in Los Angeles in fear for his life, was denied asylum. Asseri's appeal earlier this year was successful.