Health

Lebanon plans LGBT sexual health week

By Staff reports

March 24, 2017

Lebanon is hosting its first-ever LGBT sexual health week and will focus on the marginalization of the community, Gay Star News, a U.K. outlet, reports.

The Lebanese Medical Association for Sexual Health (LebMASH) will run the health week, which will focus on how the marginalization of the LGBTI community affects mental health.

In a series of videos the health campaign tackles the myriad of issues LGBT people face living in Lebanon.

One of the videos features Dr. Fadi (no first name given), a sexual health specialist.

“As a doctor, my mission includes raising awareness and not just treatment. But I’m unable to fulfill my duties when it comes to the sexual health of (LGBT) people and this worries me,” he said in the video.

Fadi explained a lot of LGBT people avoid going to doctors for fear of mistreatment and discrimination.

Although Lebanon is one the most progressive countries in the Middle East regarding LGBT issues, it is still taboo. Article 534 of the Lebanese Penal Code prohibits having sexual relations that are “contradicting the laws of nature.”

But in January, Lebanon came one step closer to decriminalizing homosexuality. A judge ruled that, “homosexuality is a personal choice, not a punishable offense.”

The ruling referenced Article 183: ‘An act undertaken in exercise of a right without abuse shall not be regarded as an offense.’

Which means if you’re exercising your freedoms and not hurting anyone, there’s no crime, Gay Star News reports.