Arts & culture

There are numerous sources of information on life as a LGBT(I) person in the different countries where Denmark are engaged in developmental partnerships: Magazines, references to book titles, film clips or references to these. And at we have started to include these in our resources. Read about for example the newest issue of Qzine - African’s only magazine of LGBTI arts and culture. Find them in our extensive database of resources.

Q zine 10

Middle East & North Africa

In most of the countries in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) same-sex relations are illegal and LGBT persons face discrimination and violation of fundamental rights.

As of May 2012 homosexual acts are illegal in 13 countries in MENA. In three of these countries (Iran, Saudi Arabia and Yemen) homosexual acts are punishable with death.



Egypt is influenced by the civil law system. As the criminal code is silent on the subject of private, adult and consensual homosexual acts, and cross-dressing, they are not de jure illegal in Egypt. However, since 2000 certain laws have been used to impose what amounts to a de facto ban on homosexuality and cross-dressing.

Read more: Egypt


Information on the conditions for LGBT people in Jordan is very scarce.


LGBT Jordanians may face discriminatory laws and social biases. Homosexual conduct between consenting adults in private is not, per se, illegal in Jordan. However, traditional Islamic morality views homosexuality and cross-dressing as sinful behavior; thus, many LGBT Jordanians remain discreet about their sexuality and there is no organized LGBT-rights movement in Jordan.

Read more: Jordan



Even though that LGBT people in Lebanon live with certain rights and in better conditions than other countries in the Middle East, LGBT people is still facing a lot of problems from the society. A poll done by the Pew Research Center in 2007 shows that 79% of Lebanese believe "Homosexuality should be rejected", as opposed to 18% who believe "homosexuality should be accepted.

Read more: Lebanon


Both male and female same-sex sexual activity is illegal in Morocco. Morocco's statute and culture towards LGBT issues stands in stark contrast to neighboring Spain.

None of the major or minor political parties have made public statements in favor of LGBT-rights and no LGBT rights legislation has been enacted. Government attitudes towards homosexuality tend to be negative, in keeping with the cultures traditional gender roles and religious mores. It has banned books on homosexuality and required schools to teach a curriculum that emphasises the danger and depravity of unnatural acts.

Read more: Morocco


LGBT are oftentimes spoke of in the geopolitical and cultural context of the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It remains one of the more taboo human rights issues in the region.

Read more: Palestine


Same-sex sexual activity is illegal in Syria and the government does not allow for a LGBT rights movement to exist. Culturally, traditional religious mores assert that homosexuality and cross-dressing are also seen as signs of decadence and immoralit

In 2010, Syrian authorities started a campaign against gay people by raiding parks, hammams and private parties and detaining many for weeks and sometimes months. Needless to say, any kind of gathering now is dangerous because of the current situation. LGBT people are now more afraid to gather than before

Read more: Syria


Information on the conditions for LGBT people in Yemen is very scarce.


Homosexuality is still illegal in Yemen in accordance to the country's Shari'ah legal system. Punishment ranges from flogging to death. Yemen is one of only seven countries to apply a death penalty for consensual sexual acts between adults of the same sex.

Read more: Yemen

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