If you thought the video of the Islamists who got tortured and beaten in Roumieh prison was outrageous, wait till you hear this story.
PS: The original story was published in French in L’Orient Le Jour
On June 9 2015, Omar was driving with his friend Samer to his house in the South when they were stopped at a checkpoint. Omar handed over his ID and other legal papers to one officer while another policeman was looking for illegal substances inside the car and found half a gram of weed with Samer. At this point, the officer confiscated and handcuffed Samer, and both men were taken to the police station for further investigation and ended up spending the night there.
The next day, Samer and his friend were dragged to an anti-drugs bureau in the South where they got humiliated and called all sorts of names. Then they were asked to perform a drug test which turned out to be negative. At this point, both men thought that the worst part was over, but one of the officers was looking through Samer’s phone conversations and all hell broke loose when he found someone called “Habibi”. Thinking that Samer was gay because he had a contact by the name of “Habibi”, he started throwing accusations and then two other officers brought Omar out of his cell, started beating him violently and torturing him by putting his head back and forth in cold water. Samer got his share of the torture and both were even electrocuted and forced to spill out names of homosexuals and drug dealers in Lebanon. After hours of torture, they called Omar and Samer’s parents and told them that their sons are gay. When Omar’s parents arrived at the bureau, the inspector refused to show them their son and re-assured them that he wasn’t tortured or beaten. “Walaw Madame, akid la2. Chou wen mfakra ne7na 3aysheen?” is what the officer said.
Both men spent the next 6 days in the South, where they got tortured on a daily basis and forced to reveal names of the gay community in Lebanon. They were later on transferred to Hobeiche police station in Beirut where they also got interrogated and detained for 5 days in a 20sqm cell that contained more than 20 prisoners. Afterwards, both were sent back to Saida and spent 8 additional days in prison with over 200 prisoners. The officer in charge there made sure to tell all the prisoners that Omar and Samer were gay. Omar’s nightmare ended 3 weeks later when he was allowed to see a judge for 2 minutes, and then signed a paper, paid a fee and got released. Samer on the other hand is still detained.
I honestly have nothing to say here. These men were jailed, tortured and humiliated for 3 weeks just because one of them had half a gram of weed and some dumbass officer thought they were gay because of a “habibi” contact. I heard Minister Machnouk is following up on this story and will punish those involved but this is not enough. This story is messed up beyond repair and the only thing Minister Machnouk can do issue a decree that forbids any ISF officer from arresting people for being homosexual and kick them out of the force if they do. It is no longer admissible to treat homosexuals as criminals and torture in Lebanese prisons needs to stop once and for all!
Disgusting , rather than go after real criminals, these men are tortured for their presumed sexuality… When will Lebanon emerge from these dark ages of barbarism.
Ok, I am totally against homosexuality, but this is a going way overboard! I was a heavy criticizer of the torture of the suspects in Roumieh earlier and this is no different! Torture and state terrorism should have no place in our society!
Why you against homosexuality.. Why? Because u can’t process it through your mind, that doesn’t make it wrong. Every aspect of nature has a multi faceted Variety in all that is a living creature. Everything on earth is not black and white and this means sexuality also Being homophobic is just another form of racism. Being gay isn’t learnt. Its internal assure you that. I never made myself this way it was a genetic condition.. The world is fucked up all because of judgement and Arabs can not comprehend that. A homosexual is nature’s ceeation. I will affirm that I would never have. Opted for this hardship that we face each day the verbal abuse the humiliation. Logical thinking and understanding. Not everything in the bible and Kieran are correct. Or the way it’s interpreted
The article fails to confirm if they’re homosexuals or not. There are missing links in the story and you either wish to hide it or you only want to make a fuss out of something that didn’t happen. If these people are gay, then say it out loud. The Lebanese law (regardless how outdated it is) treats homosexuality as a crime. Go call for legislative reforms instead of copying a incomplete story proving that you’re probably scared from saying someone is homosexual.
First of all, same sex relations are not illegal in Lebanon after a court ruling on 28 January of last year. But torture is illegal. Searching through people’s phones without a reason is illegal. Imprisonment without cause is illegal. This is a horrible crime and it only goes to show how corrupt the police in Lebanon are. Minister Machnouk is obviously not in control of his own ISF.
Since one of them is still detained, and the investigation is ongoing, it is not in the blogger’s right to confirm or not confirm the sexual orientation of the accused (victim)
Je ne connais pas la loi libanaise au sujet de l’homosexualité, mais la sexualité est une affaire personnelle qui ne regarde pas la collectivité et donc la loi, excepté quand des enfants sont impliqués. Donc dans cette affaire la sexualité de ces 2 personnes n’a aucun intérêt, mais il est scandaleux que l’on puisse être attaqué pour sa sexualité et comble du scandale torturé quelqu’en soit le motif. Mon épouse , libanaise, pense que cette affaire est une mauvaise publicité pour le Liban, or quelque soit la nationalité de l’administration policière, la proximité du crime déteint sur une minorité de fonctionnaires, c’est la force de certains policiers, certains juges ou certains politiciens de pouvoir dénoncer ces criminels. En France la rafle du Vel d’Hiv et le massacre du 17 octobre 1961 sont restés impunis jusqu’à ce jour, aux USA des policiers assassinent froidement des citoyens et certains passent à travers les mailles du filet…
This is beyond aggravating.
Searching through someone’s phone without a permit IS illegal. Being gay is NOT.
I say we throw that jackass officer wherever Samer and Omar were unjustly thrown.
What the heck.
Mahmoud ?? You are totally against homosexuality ??????? Why , what is wrong with them ???? It is absolutely not acceptable and out of t question what happened to these two boys . I live in a country where it is the other way around : if a homosexual is discriminated or someone is attacked , the perpertrator will be punished . This is how it should be and I am that it all has to do with religion . I also beleive that people who are so much against homosexuality and for this reason torture people ,are homosexual themselves . Shame of the Lebanese authorities . Greetings from Holland
who is more barbaric ?isis or lebanese authorities ?i think were living btw 2 Monsters just like the syrian regime and isis
To all the gays out there, never give reasons to arrest you, and keep on doing soft drugs if you want ,authorities just wanna scare you thats all ,to just live like slaves
I’m gay and I think of taking my husband and kids to Lebanon someday..but never anytime soon unless Lebanon and the Lebanese make some serious progression for civil rights for all.
To all gays out there,
get the HELL out of this crazy country ( as soon as u get the opportunity to do so).
Here in the western and free world, we can love, live and have a normal, lawful and rewarding life.
Something is very very wrong in the arab world. It is not only about homosexuality… It is about respect, love, tolerance, civism, acceptance education, decency And morality.
Ps: being gay has nothing to do without doing drugs!! Stay away from drugs!!!
The ISF in Lebanon has got to be one of the worst, they are disgusting and take the power way over there heads. It makes me so sad this is happening in this day of age its 2015 for gods sake, but I guess in Lebanon its still 1960 where treating homosexuals like second class citizens. weather or not they were its not the point if they were gay its basic human rights that was violated and the men’s dignity were shattered.
everyone deserves to be treated equally, people are born that way its not a choice, I guess its going to take another 20 years for the Lebanese in Lebanon to know that and come to terms. As a Lebanese living in Australia, makes me glad I am here.
We’re not in the states or somewhere as open minded , drugs were never legal and neither was being gay specially in the Middle East . I’m not defending but you guys should already know this and not write articles making our country sound worse than it already does.
Being gay and doing drugs have nothing to do with each other
Being gay is a sexual orientation and therefore not a choice
Doing drugs is illegal and can do a lot of harm.
Maybe in Lebanon a lot of gays end up doing drugs out of despair
But please don’t mix up both….
homosexual or not, weed acquisition or not, the issue here is merely that of human rights. A detainee should be regarded as innocent until proven guilty, and the process of detaining and interrogation must be according to humanely acceptable standards . This is how I believe the civil society should address and approach this issue , not from the homosexual rights entrance point
Minister machnouk will overlook what happened as always. This barbarism should end. Im personally not homosexual but ill fight for homosexuality and human rights till my last breath. Minister mashnouk should start with ma5far hobeich, and end all that bullshit thats going on over there. And btw, wheres Helem or whatever its called from all this??!!
Justice never tasted so sweet. Homosexuals need to go to the US where they belong. Lebanon will never allow such grotesque acts that go against the laws of nature. I’d like to thank the police (even though j hate those pigs as well) for doing something right this time.
And that is obviously why 99.99% of the population in lebanon dream of getting a visa to the western and free world you moron!! People like you should belong in a jail cell with terrorists and sexual offenders!!!!
You my friend are why Lebanon is still a third world country not only economically, but in terms of freedom and human rights 🙂
It’s ok that you are anti-homosexuality. I won’t even bother convincing you and you have the right to have your own opinion. However you are wrong in defending what the police did!
Torture is ILLEGAL. Detaining someone without proof of guilt is ILLEGAL. Looking through someone’s private phone communication without a warrant is ILLEGAL.
On the other hand, you should know that homosexuality is not illegal in Lebanon. That is since the judge ruling on January 28, 2014 (http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/dan-littauer/lebanon-gay-rights_b_4896786.html).
So no my friend, the police did not do “something right this time”. The police agents committed CRIMES and they should be judged and punished for that, and that will be the sweet taste of Justice.
Even if you disapprove of homosexuality, Lebanon is a democracy run by LAW.
Enta ktir mastoul… on sooooo many levels…
The mastoul is adressed to Shakib btw
Interesting how some Lebanese people want to keep Lebanon in the dark ages, backwards like the rest of the middle east, yet,they admire all the civil liberties and freedoms that the USA offers its citizens and will leave to migrate to the USA or Europe at any given opportunity.
Najib, thanks for bringing this to light. This is absolutely backwards – how do we expect to evolve and advance as a society and nation with a police force like this.
I used to live in the middle east for over 15 years, and have been living in canada for 9 years now. I wasn’t very accepting/tolerating of the idea of homosexuality when I first moved year; mainly due to the culture I grew up in. After living here and realizing that if a person is homosexual, then it has no impact on me at all. I can still live life the way I want. Who am I to decide who a person can love?
Homosexuals have it difficult all over the world. If their actions don’t harm us, why should we prevent their happiness and eliminate their feeling of being unsafe?
Maybe if we allow people to love more in the middle-east, then we can reduce/eliminate all the fighting, wars, and actually become pioneer in the world. We are just occupied by too many silly things.
When will Lebanese start behaving with respect and fairness with each other, I am more and more ashamed of my country, sometimes it looks Lebanon is not different from Saudi or any retarded and violent state. I feel extremely sad and outraged about that.
The guys’ sexual orientation is not my business more than it is the police business, as many of us know, there are criminals out there who go unpunished and the police are having “fun” by insulting and torturing innocent people, when they are the ones to be punished.
Things must change starting NOW and not tomorrow, I regret all this and put the blame on the twisted interpretation of religions and false ideologies.