Iain Stewart, Conservative MP for Milton Keynes South, has called on Foreign Secretary William Hague MP to ask the Iranian authorities to halt the execution of Ebrahim Hamidi. Last weekend’s Observer reported that the 18 year old was sentenced to death for lavat, or sodomy, on the basis of “judge’s knowledge”, a legal loophole that allows for subjective judicial rulings where there is no conclusive evidence.
Openly-gay Iain Stewart MP, who is also the Deputy Chairman of Conservative LGBT group, LGBTory, commented:
“It is an outrage that this young man faces execution. In the first place it is utterly abhorrent that homosexual acts are illegal and carry draconian penalties in Iran. That, plus the fact that there is considerable doubt as to whether the event actually took place, makes it unthinkable that Ebrahim should lose his life. I am calling on the Foreign Office to do whatever it can to exert diplomatic pressure on Iran to show some human compassion and free this young man, or at very least commute the death penalty. In the meantime, my heart goes out to Ebrahim and his family at this dreadful time”.
Matthew Sephton, LGBTory Chairman, added:
”This is a dreadful state of affairs. I am horrified that, in this day and age, there are still so many countries were homosexuality is illegal and have penalties including life imprisonment and even execution in some cases. I am, however, heartened that the new Conservative-led Government has pledged to use influence abroad to try to change cruel and outdated laws on homosexuality and I am glad that Iain has raised this serious matter with the Foreign Secretary. I just hope that Mr Hague is able to speak to the Iranian Government and that Ebrahim is saved from such barbaric treatment from his own country.”