Kuwait is to conduct ‘gay tests’ to bar LGBT people from entering the Gulf region, it was revealed today (7 October).
According to director of public health Yousouf Mindkar, health centres will taking stricter measures in order to detect gay people.
This will mean LGBT people will effectively be banned from Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates. Gay sex is already banned in all of the Arab countries.
‘Health centres conduct the routine medical check to assess the health of the expatriates when they come to into the GCC countries,’ he told local daily Al Rai.
‘However, we will take stricter measures that will help us detect gays who will be then barred from entering Kuwait or any of the GCC member states.’
It is not yet known what these ‘gay tests’ are or will involve. Gay rights activists have told GSN they are concerned it could be the infamous anal probe ‘test of shame’ that are prevalent in Lebanon.
In Kuwait, male homosexuality is punishable for up to six years in jail. If they are under 21, gay men can be imprisoned for a decade.
In 2012, police officers arrested two men for allegedly having gay sex in a café parking lot.
Speaking to GSN, a Kuwaiti transgender activist has said: ‘While many countries and cultures are going forward in legal and social acceptance of their LGBT communities, Kuwait is going backwards.
‘Our country is regressing both legally and socially, sexual orientation and gender identity is increasingly talked about by politicians and the media as an “epidemic” that the country must get rid of.’