Ashkan Shabani


Right to Breathe

LGBTQ+ rights in the Middle East Region

” I’m living in Egypt and my name is Waaiz. I don’t have the right to breathe here because like other countries in this region we don’t have any supporting laws for LGBTQ. Every day we experience harassment and systematic suppression. People can do whatever they want to us, even police can detain and torture us solely because of our gender expression. Believe it or not, I’m scared for my life, and I think I can’t find a normal life here. I know some friends who had been arrested by police, they trapped them through dating applications. They got physically and mentally and forced to sign confessions.  I’m not optimistic about the future but maybe things change.”


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