[Note: sensitive content: homophobia, violence]
The exhumation and burning took place in Kaolack, a province in western Senegal. The judiciary expressed shock at the reports, stating, "These very serious acts, amounting to barbarism, cannot go unpunished. An investigation has been opened to identify the perpetrators and initiate a criminal procedure against them," as mentioned in a press release by the prosecutor.
According to local media, the man's body was allegedly exhumed because of his presumed sexual orientation. Videos circulating on social media depict a crowd surrounding the burning body. Onlookers add wood and other flammable material to the fire, while cries of joy resonate from the crowd. Occasionally, loud applause erupts.
A source within the Senegalese justice system informed the Agence France-Presse (AFP) that four individuals have been arrested for organizing the burning.
Although rare, according to AFP, the incident is not unique. In Senegal, a country where approximately ninety percent of the population is Muslim, it is not uncommon for a deceased person suspected of being homosexual to be exhumed and burned after death. Homosexuality is hardly accepted in this West African country and is also punishable by a five-year prison sentence.