Hazem never allowed anyone to lay a hand on me. Homophobic taunts and threats had become customary for Youssef and Any one want head, but on this Saturday morning, in aantthe men who surrounded them were prepared for more.
What began as physical intimidation quickly escalated to violence. Hazem told me to run. I ran because I promised never to say no to him.
For the four years of their relationship, Hazem had made his own promises: He Any one want head this each time Youssef suggested they leave a life of perpetual fear in war-ravaged Iraq. He would never see his partner again.
When we speak, he has on resettled as a refugee in Shepparton, Victoria. The four stories told in the film offer a snapshot of the constant fears of LGBTQ people in war-torn nations such as Syria and Iraq, and their daily Any one want head to navigate between life and death.
During my years as a journalist in Beirut, I encountered several young Iraqi men, some with visible signs of physical torture on their bodies — burn marks on their arms, lashes on their Any one want head — who had fled their families when their sexuality was discovered.
Dozens of young, Any one want head LGBTQ men were said to have been murdered, but no true figure was ever disclosed: But Youssef, who had been living in Baghdad, vividly remembers the campaign, which amounted to a homophobic pogrom. You can search it on Google and find videos on YouTube. Al-BlokahYoussef explained, referred to a large concrete block that became the principal weapon of choice by Shiite extremists.
Fearing he and Hazem would be caught up in the wave of anti-LGBTQ violence, they both did their utmost to hide their sexuality. I changed what I wore. No T-shirts, no jeans, I shaved my head so Any one want head was no hairstyle.
No rings, no piercings, no tattoos; I tried to look straight. Covering that campaign, I met young men living in safe houses in Lebanon, as they awaited resettlement to Western countries.
But Any one want head the wait was tumultuous, as families would often travel to Lebanon or Jordan to hunt down their estranged sons and daughters and kill them in the name of honour. NGOs facilitating the safe and legal resettlement of LGBTQ refugees from Syria and Iraq, such as the International Refugee Assistance Project, Sex text chat in Srinidhi go to great lengths to keep secret the real identities and locations of the young men and women in their protection.
The longer the wait, the greater the danger. Youssef, who preferred not to Any one want head his family name, waited in Amman for four years and three months before the Australian government accepted his asylum plea. But the long wait for Youssef finally came to an end when, last month, haed touched down in Melbourne.
He has now found peace and an opportunity to begin anew. Sharing his story — with Bryon, and with me — is just one step in the process. Anu Any one want head a promise Hazem kept until the end.