An official report by the Iranian government has found that premarital sex is happening at an alarming rate among young adults despite the country’s strict laws against public displays of affection and Islamic code.
Of the 142,000 people surveyed, 80 percent of the women reported having boyfriends (who they presumably have sex with). The survey also found 17 percent of respondents have engaged in a same-sex relationship despite the country’s punishment of death for homosexual acts.
The help combat the “problem” of heterosexual “promiscuity,” the report recommended that couples be allowed to register temporary marriages — a tradition among Shiite Muslims called “sigheh.” However, researchers were at a loss for how to deal with young Iranians partaking in same-sex relationships.
In 2007, Iran’s former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad famously declared that there were no homosexuals in his country. In a 2012 interview, Ahmadinejad also called gays “ugly” and likened homosexuality to “stealing.”