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Bangladesh police arrest 27 men for being gay

Leading LGBTI rights activist was murdered in Bangladesh last year

Bangladesh police arrest 27 men for being gay
Xulhaz Mannan was killed in horrific machete attack

Bangladesh police have arrested 27 men on suspicion of being gay, an official has said.

The students, aged between 20 and 30, were targeted by elite police unit Rapid Action Battalion and planned to charge them with drug possession.

The unit raided a community centre in Keraniganj, outside the nation’s capital, where the group met every two months and stayed overnight.

Zahangir Hossain Matobbar claim they recovered illegal drugs and condoms in their possession.

The agency also arrested the owner of the community centre.

As homosexuality is illegal in Bangladesh, house parties are often the only time LGBTI people can feel free and safe to be open about their sexual or gender identity.

Last year, a leading LGBTI activist and his friend in Dhaka were murdered by extremists.

Xulhaz Mannan, the editor of Roopbaan – a source for LGBTI news and entertainment in the country, was one of two people who were killed by machetes in the attack in the capital.

ISIS had claimed responsibility.

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