Lebanon: Court acquits Military Personnel held for Sodomy

A military court in Lebanon has acquitted four military men who had been held for sodomy in a major ruling. Judge Peter Germanos, cleared the charges against the group of being involved in sexual acts which were contrary to nature and also refused issue any warrants for their arrest.

Germanos told the media, that sodomy is not punishable offence in law as the penal code of the country did not clarify what kind of relationship should be put in the category of being contrary to nature. All four people who had been referred to the court were already dismissed from their posts. Many Civil Courts of the country had earlier ruled that consensual sex between people of the same sex was not legal. The ruling given by Germanos thus is a first given by a military tribunal. It was in July 2018 that an appeals court had declined to convict nine people who had been arrested from a suburb at Beirut and were charged under Article 534 of the Penal Code of the country. The law in Lebanon clearly punishes sexual intercourse which is contrary to the order of nature with up to one year in prison.

Many Human Rights groups have raised their voice against the law as they feel it is directed against the gay and transgender population in the country. Gay Rights have been given a legal coating in many Western nations which have also legalised gay marriage.

Lebanon is also home to Hezbollah who had recently denounced the recognition of Golan Heights as a territory of Israel by US President Donald Trump. The announcement made by the US President had sparked global outrage.

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