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One step forward, two steps back for LGBTQ+ rights in Lebanon

In July, a district court of appeal in Lebanon issued a groundbreaking ruling that consensual sex between people of the same sex is lawful.[1]

However, Beirut Pride was cancelled under pressure from security forces,[2] which also attempted to shut down a lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, and queer (LGBTQ+) activist conference that has taken place annually since 2013. When authorities were unable to force Arab Foundation for Freedoms and Equality to cancel the event, security forces arrived at the hotel where it was being held and tried to shut it down themselves.[3]



[1] Human Rights Watch, Lebanon: Same-Sex Relations Not Illegal, 19 July 2018, available at

[2] IFEX, ‘Journalists and rights defenders under fire, Pride cancelled’, 1 June 2018, available at

[3] Human Rights Watch, Lebanon: Security Forces Try to Close LGBT Conference, 4 October 2018, available at