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Two gay men found dead in Iraqi slum

The bodies of two hay men were found in a Shitte slum after a leading cleric repeatedly condemned homosexuality, an Iraqi police official said Saturday.

According to MSNBC.com, Shiite cleric Sattar al-Battat repeatedly condemned homosexuality during recent Friday prayers. He said that Islam prohibits homosexuality.

Homosexual acts are punishable in Iraq, and can result in up to seven years in prison.

Police suspect that the men were killing Thursday by their relatives because no one has claimed the bodies or called for an investigation. Homosexuality is considered shameful to the family.

An anonymous official said that the killings came weeks after police found four bodies buried in late March near Sadr City. The bodies had th words “pervert” and “puppies” written on their chests.

Puppy is a derogatory word used by residents to refer to homosexuals, the official said.

Thanks to the Mahdi Army militia cease fire, homosexuals have become less afraid to declare their tendencies, the official said.