German Court Fines Family for Kidnapping Gay Muslim to Force Him into Marriage

REUTERS/Axel Schmidt
REUTERS/Axel Schmidt

A German court fined Nasser El-Ahmad’s father and two uncles after they attempted to kidnap and marry him off to a Lebanese girl against his will. He also claimed his relatives tortured him over his homosexuality.

Nasser came out as gay when he was 15 years old in 2012. He alleged that, after he came out, his uncle “covered him in petrol and threatened to set him alight and later poured boiling water all over him.” He also claimed his father told him “he would personally ram a knife” into his throat. Nasser ran away, but Berlin lacks proper shelters for vulnerable men. The organization Papatya, which is mainly for girls and young women, took him in.

Nasser’s mother lured him back home. When he arrived, the relatives shoved him “into a car, which was intercepted by police on the Romanian-Bulgarian border after Interpol had issued a disappearance alert.”

His father and uncles did not attend the hearing, but Nasser showed up wearing a “STOP HOMOPHOBIA” badge. He completely agreed with the court’s decision to fine the three men $1,436.

“I have managed to bring this case to court. For me this chapter in my life is over now,” he said after the court released its decision. “I’m not someone who hides away. I don’t want to suppress my sexuality.”

Berlin officials reported that of the 460 cases of forced marriages in Germany, 29 of them involved men. Nasser also hopes his case will bring to light the need for shelter for boys and young men.

“It was a very brave step as a homosexual… to question a religious society that is very conservative and lives in the Middle Ages,” claimed film director and gay rights activist Rosa von Praunheim. “Gays and young women are in the same boat.”


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