A house in Porto Bello, St James, was attacked early Tuesday morning forcing it’s inhabitants to flee in order to protect their lives. The house was taken over by four gay men close to two years ago. Numerous projectiles were set ablaze hurled unto the structure.
The attack began around 7 p.m. in front of the home, but ultimately, all four men were able to flee to another abandoned house in the parish, near Montego Bay, according to the Jamaica Forum for Lesbians, All-Sexuals & Gays. “They have no food, clothes, toiletries and no bed but we are trying as best as possible to assist them with our partners,” Latoya Nugent, manager of education and outreach at J-FLAG told BuzzFeed.
J-FLAG has been in contact with three of the four victims in the attack and confirms they are gay men. An initial report in The Gleaner states local authorities were unable to take the men into protective custody because they would not be safe at police facilities there, but said they are investigating the attack.
“The incident is part of the ongoing hostility that many Jamaicans who are marginalized and vulnerable because of their socio-economic status, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression and homelessness experience,” Nugent said. “These men and other vulnerable LGBT Jamaicans are in desperate in need of assistance and we are asking persons to support us financially and otherwise.”
The house was the last place where 17-year-old Dwayne ‘Gully Queen’ Jones, (pictured right) who was killed by a mob in St James earlier this year, lived. The men who were attacked on Tuesday night were said to be his friends.
While some Jamaicans are unsympathetic to members of the gay community, international gay rights group have regularly come to their defence. They protested the killing of Jones at a party, where he gad gone pretending to be a female.
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