Photo: Flickr

Over 130 LGBTQ+ advocacy groups have called for the protection of women, children, and other “vulnerable persons” in Afghanistan.

In a joint statement alongside other organisations, ILGA Asia has pledged for support and action to be taken for LGBTQ+ people trapped in Afghanistan.

On August 15,  Taliban fighters took control of the Afghan presidential palace in Kabul. Since then, they have seized political control of the whole country, as Afghan President Ashraf Ghani fled the country.

The Taliban’s swift adoption of power has resulted in the sudden collapse of Afghanistan’s Islamic Republic government. As a result, many political and advocacy groups have been concerned about the safety and welfare of minorities in the country, including LGBTQ+ people, women, and religious minorities.

In their joint open letter, ILGA Asia has stressed they are concerned “over human rights and the safety of marginalised groups in the country.”

ILGA Asia is the Asian Region of the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association (ILGA Asia), representing more than 170 LGBTI organizations in East, South, Southeast, and West Asia, with the administrative office in Bangkok, Thailand.

The letter stated: “We also fear that LGBTIQ people will be further criminalised and persecuted, as authorities in the Taliban have made recent statements that death sentences will be reinstated for gay men.

“The Afghan LGBTIQ people have already been living in fear of violence and killings for a number of years, and we dread that this situation will escalate further.”

In an ILGA World’s latest State-Sponsored Homophobia (2020) report, Afghanistan was listed as a country that offers no legal certainty that the death penalty is the established punishment for consensual same-sex sexual acts.

Afghanistan also criminalises “same-sex conduct” under Section 646 of Afghanistan’s 2017 Penal Code which has been enforced in recent years.

You can read a list of all the LGBTQ+ advocacy groups that signed the open letter below:

  1. 6Rang (Iranian Lesbian and Transgender Network)

  2. Access Planet Organization

  3. African Trans Network

  4. Aleph Melbourne

  5. All Out

  6. All Women’s Action Society (AWAM)

  7. Alouen

  8. Amnesty International Taiwan Section

  9. Antalya Feminist Kolektif

  10. ASEAN Feminist LBQ Network

  11. ASEAN SOGIE Caucus

  12. Asia Pacific Transgender Network

  13. Asia-Pacific Rainbow Catholics Network

  14. Bangladesh Queer Partnership Platform- EQUAL

  15. Beyond Borders Malaysia

  16. Bisdak Pride, Inc.

  17. Bisexual Alliance Victoria

  18. Boys of Bangladesh (Formerly)

  19. Campaign for Change

  20. CAN-Myanmar

  21. CEDAW Committee of Trinidad & Tobago

  22. Centre for Civil and Political Rights

  23. Centre for Independent Journalism (CIJ) Malaysia

  24. COC Netherlands

  25. Community Welfare and Development Fund

  26. Covenants Watch

  27. CPCD Studio

  28. Dawei Probono Lawyer Network

  29. Deaf Rainbow

  30. Diversity and Solidarity Trust – Sri Lanka

  31. Diversity Lounge Toyama

  32. Doshisha University

  33. Edge Effect

  34. ELLY Fukui

  35. Equal Asia Foundation

  36. EQUAL GROUND, Sri Lanka

  37. GAYa NUSANTARA Foundation

  38. Gays Without Borders

  39. Helem

  40. Human Dignity Trust

  41. Human Rights Defenders World Summit

  42. ILGA Asia

  43. ILGA World

  44. Iloilo Pride Team

  45. Inclusive Bangladesh

  46. International Service for Human Rights

  47. International Women’s Rights Action Watch Asia Pacific

  48. Intersex Asia

  49. Intersex Philippines

  50. isha lisha – Haifa feminist center

  51. Ishikawa Conference for LGBT

  52. Iwate Rainbow Network

  53. J-ALL (Japan Alliance for LGBT Legislation)

  54. JEJAKA

  55. justice for sisters

  56. Kampania Przeciw Homofobii | Campaign Against Homophobia (Poland)

  57. Kanazawa Rainbow Pride

  58. Kaos GL

  59. Korean Sexual-minority Culture & Rights Center

  60. LakanBini Advocates Pilipinas

  61. Legal Dignity

  62. Let’s Breakthrough, Inc.

  63. Lezpa

  64. LGBT Centre

  65. LOUD (Lesbians of Undeniable Drive)

  66. LOVE4ONE

  67. M-coalition


  69. Manushya Foundation

  70. Marsa Sexual Health Center

  71. Matimba

  72. Metro Manila Pride

  73. Midneunfemi

  74. Monsoon Malaysia (MM)

  75. MOSAIC Mena

  76. Movimiento de Integración y Liberación Homosexual (MOVILH)

  77. Mujer-LGBT Organization, Inc

  78. Namibia Diverse Women Association

  79. Nijiiro Diversity

  80. Noboprobhaat

  81. Nőkért Egyesület (Association for Women), Hungary

  82. NPO Tokyo Rainbow Pride

  83. Oogachaga

  84. Organization Intersex International-Chinese (Oii-Chinese)

  85. Outrage Magazine

  86. Pacific Human Rights Initiative

  87. Palestinian Working Woman for Development “PWWSD”

  88. Pan Africa ILGA

  89. PELANGI Campaign

  90. Persatuan Sahabat Wanita, Selangor (Friends of Women Organisation, Selangor)

  91. Pioneer Filipino Transgender men Movement


  93. Planet Ally

  94. PLUHO (People Like Us Hang Out!)

  95. Pride House Tokyo

  96. PROHAM

  97. Proud Futures

  98. PT Foundation

  99. Queer Voices of Bhutan

  100. Queers4Climate

  101. Rainbow Action Against Sexual-Minority Discrimination

  102. Rainbow Egypt

  103. RainbowJesus (무지개예수)

  104. RFSL (The Swedish Federation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and Intersex Rights)

  105. Sans Tabous

  106. Sayoni

  107. SEED Malaysia

  108. Seoul Human Rights Film Festival in South Korea

  109. SGRainbow

  110. SHARE, center for Sexual rigHts And Reproductive justicE

  111. Sisters in Islam, Malaysia

  112. SOGILAW


  114. Success Capital Organisation

  115. Swasti

  116. Taiwan Association for Human Rights

  117. Taiwan Equality Campaign

  118. Taiwan Gender Equity Education Association

  119. Taiwan LGBTQ Family Rights Advocacy

  120. Taiwan Tongzhi (LGBTQ+) Hotline Association

  121. The Gay and Lesbian Coalition of Kenya (GALCK)

  122. The Global Center for LGBTI+ Freedom and Education

  123. The Institute for Studies on Society, Economy & Environment – iSEE

  124. Thorne Harbour Health

  125. Together4Change: DAWOOM

  126. Transgender Equality Hong Kong

  127. Transgender Victoria

  128. Transpiration Power

  129. Trikone Australasia Inc

  130. Tufts University

  131. UP Babaylan

  132. Visayas LBTQ Network

  133. Women Against Rape

  134. Women for Women’s Human Rights (WWHR)

  135. Youth Voices Count

  136. にじ♡はぐ 石川

  137. ひだまりの会