A Palestinian homosexual was beheaded in the occupied West Bank due to his sexual orientation, an Israeli LGBT+ rights organization said on Friday, October 7, with Palestinian police contesting the motive for the crime.
Palestinian police said Ahmed Abu Murkhiyeh, 25, was found beheaded on Wednesday in Hebron, a city in the southern West Bank where he was from. In a statement, the young man’s relatives indicated that he had been murdered.while visiting his family in Hebron“, without giving more details about the circumstances of his death.
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Focus on Canada after fleeing the West Bank
According to Rita Petrenko, director of the Israeli association al-Bait al-Mokhtalef, Ahmed Abou Murkhiyeh had contacted this organization in April 2021 after having fled the West Bank, where he feared persecution, and since then he has lived in associative shelters. In Israel. “had not contactedhis family ever since and was preparing an asylum application for Canada, he told AFP.
A few hours before his death, he was in Tel Aviv and had no intention of going to Hebron, Rita Petrenko said, wondering how he could have ended up in this city afterwards. “I think he was killed because of his sexual orientation.“, she added. The Palestinian police reported his murder in a statement on Thursday, without giving a reason. However, it questions the homosexuality of the victim, while several Palestinian security sources told AFP that the murder was related with drug trafficking. A member of his family was arrested, according to these sources who requested anonymity. Rami Fahel, director of the Israeli Arab association Alwan for the defense of the LGBT+ community, told AFP that he had met with Abu Murkhiyeh in several times, including at least one in Tel Aviv.
His family says he lived in Jordan. Homosexuality remains a largely taboo subject in Palestinian society. According to human rights NGOs, Israel granted residence permits to some people from the LGBT+ community who feared persecution in the Palestinian Territories. Contacted by AFP, Cogat, the Israeli body in charge of civilian operations in the Palestinian Territories, did not indicate whether it had granted a residence permit to Ahmed Abou Murkhiyeh.