Ali Fazeli Monfared

Ali "Alireza" Fazeli Monfared (January 2, 2001 – May 4, 2021) was a gay Iranian citizen kidnapped and murdered by three men, namely his half-brother and two cousins, near the city of Ahvaz in Iran's Khuzestan Province because of his sexual orientation. News of the murder generated significant online coverage and calls by activists and celebrities to challenge homophobia in Iran.[1][2][3]

Ali Fazeli Monfared
Ali Fazeli Monfared.webp
Born(2001-01-02)January 2, 2001
DiedMay 4, 2021(2021-05-04) (aged 20)
Cause of deathMurder by beheading
Other namesAlireza


Identified as a case of honor killing, the murder by beheading[1] was committed days after Fazeli Monfared's half-brother learned about his sexual orientation from his military service exemption card.[4][5] Iran's military laws exempt gay people from mandatory military service. It is reported that Fazeli Monfared was planning to move to Turkey and seek asylum after receiving his military service exemption.[6][7] Fazeli Monfared's mother was hospitalized after learning of the death, according to the Iranian LGBTQ+ rights group 6Rang,[8][9] and his half-brother and cousins were arrested.[5][10]

Iran's anti-LGBT military law outing gays has been blamed for Fazeli Monfared's murder.[11][12]

According to individuals who had known Alireza Fazeli Monfared prior to his murder, he had faced years of homophobic and transphobic harassment, which he never reported to the police "out of a fear of facing violence and prosecution at the hands of the authorities."[13]


Activists and celebrities, including US singer Demi Lovato, posted on social media about the murder to raise awareness of homophobia in Iran.[14] Iranian LGBT activist Masih Alinejad, who lives in the United States, told Insider that "I went to look at his page and I found that he was so full of life. Immediately, I posted about his death on my social media and it went viral. I wish he had received this sort of attention while he was alive."[14]

Many LGBT Iranians secretly filmed videos walking with their partners and exhibiting rainbow flags to protest against the killing.[15] Human rights organization Amnesty International called for a full investigation into the murder and a revocation of Iran's anti-gay laws.[16]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Yurcaba, Jo (May 11, 2021). "Gay Iranian man dead in alleged 'honor killing,' rights group says". NBC News. Retrieved May 26, 2021.
  2. ^ Esfandiari, Golnaz (May 11, 2021). "Horrific Killing Of Young Gay Man Puts Plight Of Iran's LGBT Community In Spotlight". RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty. Retrieved May 26, 2021.
  3. ^ Gul Tuysuz (2021-05-15). "A card exempted a gay man from serving in Iran's military. It may have cost him his life". CNN. Retrieved 2021-07-22.
  4. ^ "گزارش‌ها از قتل یک مرد جوان در اهواز 'به ظن همجنسگرایی'". BBC Persian (in Persian). May 7, 2021. Archived from the original on 2021-05-08. Retrieved May 26, 2021.
  5. ^ a b "کشته شدن جوان همجنسگرا در اهواز به دست سه مرد خانواده: قتل بعد از درج گرایش جنسی‌ روی کارت معافیت انجام شد". Iran International (in Persian). 2021-05-08. Archived from the original on 2021-05-08. Retrieved 2021-05-08.
  6. ^ "Gay man 'beheaded by relatives' in Iran in suspected honour killing". 2021-05-10. Archived from the original on 2021-05-10. Retrieved 2021-05-11.
  7. ^ "Gay man brutally murdered and beheaded by family in Iran in 'honour killing'". PinkNews. 2021-05-09. Archived from the original on 2021-05-11. Retrieved 2021-05-11.
  8. ^ "Man allegedly beheaded by his family for being gay". Newsweek. 2021-05-12. Archived from the original on 2021-05-12. Retrieved 2021-05-12.
  9. ^ "20-Year-Old Man Reportedly Beheaded by Family For Being Gay". 2021-05-10. Archived from the original on 2021-05-12. Retrieved 2021-05-12.
  10. ^ ""بازداشت سه نفر" به اتهام قتل یک همجنسگرا در اهواز". Radio Farda (in Persian). Archived from the original on 2021-05-08. Retrieved 2021-05-08.
  11. ^ "Iran's anti-LGBT military law blamed for murder of gay man". The Jerusalem Post | Archived from the original on 2021-05-08. Retrieved 2021-05-09.
  12. ^ "Gay Iranian Man Murdered by Family on Being 'Outed' by Military Service Card". IranWire | خانه. Archived from the original on 2021-05-09. Retrieved 2021-05-09.
  13. ^ "Iran: Murder of gay man highlights dangers of state-sanctioned abuses against LGBTI people". Amnesty International. 17 May 2021.
  14. ^ a b Zitser, Joshua (17 May 2021). "Alireza Fazeli Monfared wanted to live as a free gay man in the West. His family in Iran beheaded him days before his dream came true, say activists". Insider. Archived from the original on 17 May 2021. Retrieved 17 May 2021.
  15. ^ Kelleher, Patrick (14 May 2021). "Defiant queer Iranians take to the streets in pride flags to protest against brutal honour killing of young gay man". PinkNews. Archived from the original on 14 May 2021. Retrieved 17 May 2021.
  16. ^ "Watchdog Says Killing Of Young Gay Man In Iran Highlights Need To Protect LGBT Rights". RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty. 17 May 2021. Retrieved 18 May 2021.

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