A video of a wedding ceremony of two men in Mauritania, said to be in the capital Nouakchott, sparked widespread controversy and angry reactions on social media.
Translation: “May God burn them in hell.”
Mauritanians reacted to the video by complaining that the number of homosexuals is increasing in the country, demanding the government to impose harsher punishments.
The Mauritanian blogger, Hamada El Bou, shared the video with a caption that says “if it was up to me, I’d put these two damned creatures in prison for life, where they never see the sun.”
Translation: “May God save us from sin.”
Meanwhile the journalist Rabi Ould Idoum, said that gay men “cross the Mauritanian-Senegalese borders, fearing that their lives are danger, as the penalties amount to the death penalty in cases of homosexuality in Mauritania.”
Translation: “Homosexuals have been arrested in the Capital, and the police are investigating more people involved to be charged.”
A Mauritanian blogger, Avatis Labat, shared the video of the said wedding, saying that she considers gay marriage “a crime that must be fought,” adding, “authorities, sheikhs and leaders of public opinion must take the necessary measures to stop this crime with the most severe penalties, in order to serve as an example for those who dare to do such a criminal act that is contrary to our religious and Islamic values.”
Translation: “After police raided the said hotel rooms, we demand that they arrest every other homosexual in the country who does what angers Allah.”
The angry reactions to the video led Mauritania's authorities to investigate the incident, where police authorities raided wedding halls in search for the ceremony's organizers and the grooms to be arrested.
Authorities announced that the people in the video have since been arrested.
Mauritanian law criminalizes same-sex marriage, and imposes harsh penalties for homosexuals, as Mauritania is classified as one of the countries where punishments for gay people sometimes lead to execution.