Informal Wedding “a Small Victory” for Gays in Tajikistan

LGBT flag (Wiki image)

LGBT flag (Wiki image)

A small, informal wedding was recently held [ru] in Dushanbe. Although weddings in Tajikistan are regular events, this ceremony was different in one important aspect: the newly wed were both men. The two young persons, both in their mid-twenties, held the ceremony to announce that they intend to live as a couple, despite the fact that there is very little tolerance towards sexual minorities in Tajikistan and no legal means of registering a gay marriage.

On Twitter, @gaytajikistan celebrated [ru] the event:

Our small victory: A gay wedding in Tajikistan #Таджикистан #лгбт

Some other social media users were in a less celebratory mood. On Blogiston, Sarbaland reacted [ru] angrily to the news, referring to gay men as “sodomites” and blaming the West for “encouraging” homosexuality in the country:

Я никогда не думал что доживу до такого дня когда в нашей родине содомиты будут проводить свадьбы и будут еще другим об этом говорить. Я ошибался. Оказывается и мы таджики попали под влияние запада и его политики поощрения всякой дряни.

I never through I would live to see the day when sodomites would be holding weddings in our country and telling other people about this. I was wrong. It appears that we, Tajiks, have also come under the influence of the West and its policy of encouraging all kinds of crap.

He continues [ru], suggesting that members of the LGBT community are not part of Tajik society and should be expelled:

Это даже читать противно. Не могу понять как эти содомиты позволили себе в нашей мусульманском обществе так себя вести и даже проводить свадьбу. Не могу понять как их родители и родственники не остановили их. Если об этом написали журналисты значит многие об этом знают. 

Западные организации и посольства а также журналисты защищают содомитов. Многие наши граждане тоже подверглись их влиянию и теперь выступают за защиту этих нелюдей. Я думаю что нужно поднять вопрос с западными странами: если вам нужны такие люди и вы их защищаете, то забирайте себе. Пусть правительство даже деньгами поможет таким людям уезжать из Таджикистана навсегда. Им нет места в нашем обществе. Они не часть Таджикистана!

I am disgusted at reading this. I cannot understand why these sodomites dare to behave this way and hold a wedding in our Muslim society. I cannot understand why their parents and relatives don't stop them. If journalists write about this, many people know this.

Western organizations, embassies and journalists protect the sodomites. Many of our citizens have also been influenced and now protect these non-humans as well. I think we should tell western countries that if they need this kind of people and want to protect them, they should take them. Let the government help people like this to leave Tajikistan forever. There is no place for them in our society. They are not part of Tajikistan!

As Global Voices author Iskandar wrote back in February:

Tajikistan, a conservative Central Asian nation where over 95 percent of people are Muslims, has been described as “hell for gays”. Social media is increasingly enabling members of the country's LGBT community to push back against homophobic attitudes. 

Comments under Radio Ozodi's coverage of the exchange of vows were overwhelmingly negative, with several referring to LGBT and “western propaganda”, although there was one well-wisher [ru]:

Pozdravlyau so svadboy!!!!!!! jelau vsego samogo nailuchshego!!!!
eto ix sudba, ix jizn, kajdiy immet pravo jit kak on xochet! selyavi!

I congratulate you on your wedding!!!!! I wish you all the best!!!! It is their destiny, their life, everyone has a right to live as he or she wants! C'est la vie!

Alexander Sodiqov contributed reporting to this article.

1 comment

Join the conversation

Authors, please log in »


  • All comments are reviewed by a moderator. Do not submit your comment more than once or it may be identified as spam.
  • Please treat others with respect. Comments containing hate speech, obscenity, and personal attacks will not be approved.