Syrian Arab Republic

At a glance

  • Same-sex relations: illegal
  • Legal gender recognition: possible
  • Registration of LGBTIQ organizations: not possible
  • Actions related to SOGI at UN: opposed IE SOGI in 2016

 

Overview

Syria’s ongoing conflict has negatively impacted the country’s acceptance of LGBTIQ people. Before the 2011 Arab Spring and the start of the conflict, persecution of LGBTIQ people was common, with regular violence against LGBTIQ people, including police raids of private events. Since 2011, LGBTIQ Syrians have been particularly vulnerable to violence as the government, militia groups, and religious extremist groups vie for power throughout the country. Many of these rival groups, including ISIS and Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, have targeted LGBTIQ people, subjecting them to arrests, beating, torture, and execution.

Due to the political unrest, there has been little LGBTIQ activism in Syria since the Arab Spring. LGBTIQ identities are stigmatized in Syria and are often framed as “un-Islamic” and “immoral,” leading to social rejection, discrimination, harassment, and violence by private individuals and organized groups.